Prince Harry has been dealt a major blow as he lost a bid to have the Daily Mail publisher’s defence to his libel claim thrown out by the High Court.
The Duke of Sussex filed a lawsuit against Associated Newspapers Limited (ANL) for allegedly “attacking his honesty and integrity” by posted an article about his court battle against the Home Office in February 2022.
In his court filings, the Spare author claimed that the article was “an attack on his honesty and integrity.”
ANL countered his claim noting the article did nothing but express an “honest opinion,” prompting “no serious harm” to his reputation.
Harry appealed the High Court to either dismiss the media organization’s defence or grant judgement in his favor.
However, Mr Justice Nicklin ruled against "striking out" ANL’s defence in a written statement.
He said: “Overall, it is not fanciful that the defendant will be successful, at trial, in demonstrating that the public statements issued on the claimant’s behalf sought to promote the judicial review claim as his battle against the Government’s (perverse) decision to refuse to allow him to pay for his own security.
“There is a real prospect that the defendant will succeed in demonstrating that this was a misleading description of the issues in the judicial review claim, arguably promoted because it was hoped to show the claimant’s judicial review claim in a positive light, whereas a portrayal of the judicial review claim as the claimant trying to force the Government to reinstate his, taxpayer-funded, state security risked his appearing in a negative light.”
He recently faced trial after disputing Home Office’s decision to strip him and his family off security while they are visiting the UK.
The decision, taken by RAVEC committee in the royal household, came after the duke along with his wife Meghan Markle quit the Royal Family in 2020.