Prince Harry Wins Big In Latest Court Case Against The Media

If there’s one thing that Prince Harry has made clear over the last few years, it’s that he won’t tolerate lies, defamation, or harassment from the media toward him, his wife, or his son. Rightfully so, after growing up in the glaring spotlight surrounding his mother, Prince Harry has taken an offensive approach to encroachment by the media. Recently, his efforts have been noticed and rewarded after he filed a case against The Mail on Sunday and MailOnline about two articles they had written, People notes.

The outlets claimed that Prince Harry’s decision to step away from his duties as a “senior royal” also meant that he had “turned his back” on the British army, according to People. With army generals serving as the outlets’ sources, the articles came out in October of 2020 and claimed that the royal had abandoned his fellow soldiers. 

Prince Harry’s attorney said during an open court session that, “The baseless, false and defamatory stories published constituted not only a personal attack on the Duke’s character, but also wrongly brought into question his service to this country” (per CNN). The Mail on Sunday and MailOnline articles stated that Prince Harry didn’t respond to messages from the Chief of the General Staff and had “snubbed” the military and its marine branch.

Prince Harry is donating his winnings

Following the lawsuit, Prince Harry officially walked away with “substantial damages” that Associated Newspapers, the parent company of both The Mail on Sunday and MailOnline, must pay, People reports. During his time in the British Armed Forces, Prince Harry served in Afghanistan and flew combat missions (via The Royal Household). Now, he’s donating all of his winnings to the charity that he founded for his former division: the Invictus Games Foundation.

The undisclosed amount will support the charitable organization which aims to help wounded war veterans. In addition to paying a likely large sum to the Duke of Sussex, the outlets have both issued apologies for their false reporting. A spokesperson for the couple released a statement, saying, “Today, The Mail on Sunday and MailOnline publicly admitted in open court that they pushed a completely false and defamatory story. And they’ve apologised for questioning The Duke of Sussex’s commitment to the Royal Marines and British Armed Forces. The truth is that The Duke’s commitment to the military community is unquestionable” (via CNN). 

The win comes after a long and strained relationship with major British tabloids finally came to an abrupt end in 2020 with CNN reporting that the couple had disengaged with the media companies entirely. Following intense invasions of privacy, baseless claims and cruel treatment of their articles’ subjects, the media companies had no choice but to comply with the couple’s wishes. Now, it appears that, in order to avoid a lawsuit, they will need to report much more carefully.

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