Prince Harry’s legal claim against the publishers of The Daily Mail should be ‘rejected in entirety’, the High Court in London heard on Wednesday, reported The Evening Standard.
The Duke of Sussex sued Associated Newspapers Limited (ANL) last year alleging that the company used unlawful and illegal informal gathering methods to target him; several other high profile names are also suing ANL for the same, including Sir Elton John, Liz Hurley, Sadie Frost, and Baroness Doreen Lawrence of Clarendon.
While Prince Harry, who landed in London earlier this week to show up in court for the preliminary hearing, has called out ANL’s ‘unchecked power and criminality’, the news giant says his and others’ legal claims ‘have no real prospects of succeeding’.
In fact, the publisher’s lawyers on Wednesday argued at the High Court that the case ‘should be dismissed or a judgement made in its favour without a trial’.
Barrister Adrian Beltrami KC, for ANL, told the court: “The claims are rejected by the defendant in their entirety as are the unfounded allegations that are repeatedly made that the defendant either misled the Leveson Inquiry or concealed evidence from the Leveson Inquiry.”
“Whatever claims the claimants had or may have had have been brought far too late,” he also added.
Beltrami further said: “The court should not hesitate to dismiss these stale claims at an early stage, thereby avoiding what would otherwise be a considerable waste of time, costs and the court’s resources.”
However, ANL’s latest bid was slammed in court by Prince Harry’s legal team, who called it “hopeless, plainly inappropriate and suggestive of a tactical gamble to avoid a full trial.”
David Sherborne, from the claimant side, said in a written court argument that they ‘heavily resisted’ ANL’s move to have the case dismissed.
Earlier on Tuesday, a witness statement was released in which Prince Harry slammed journalists at ANL as “criminals with journalistic powers which should concern every single one of us.”