Meghan Markle, 39, is likely to be celebrating after she won her High Court privacy claim against the Mail on Sunday over the publication of a “personal and private” handwritten letter to her estranged father, Thomas Markle on Thursday. The Duchess sued Mail on Sunday publishers Associated Newspapers (ANL) over the publication of extracts from a letter to her father.
The judge Mr Justice Warby ruled in Meghan’s favour and said she had a “reasonable expectation that the contents of the letter would remain private”.
The judge also granted Meghan a “summary judgment” in her claim for misuse of private information against the publisher of the Mail on Sunday and MailOnline, which meant part of the case has been resolved without going to trial.
Reacting to Meghan’s win, one royal expert has claimed the victory will come as a “profound relief” to the Queen and may even help “rebuild bridges” between the Sussexes and the rest of the Royal Family, including Prince William.
Royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams told Express.co.uk: “The Palace will be profoundly relieved at the judgement handed down by Lord Justice Warby, which is a huge victory for Meghan.”
Mr Fitzwilliams branded Meghan’s pursuit of legal action “an audacious gamble” as it risked upsetting the court-shy Royal Family.
He said: “This was an audacious gamble. She began the case when she was actually on tour in South Africa which was extraordinary timing.
“Also, it was clear that the case could have turned into an international cause celebre if Meghan and her estranged father faced each other, either virtually or in-person, in a court.
“There was also the issue of Meghan’s friends quoting from the letter in People magazine, which it was thought might have affected the ruling.”
The expert added: “There was also Princess Caroline of Monaco’s victory in 2004 about her right not to be photographed in a public place.
“This court victory will resonate as Meghan’s legal team successfully aimed for a Summary Judgement, which meant that because the judge ruled that the publication of extracts of this private letter was manifestly unlawful, no court hearing was necessary.”
Touching on the Royal Family’s aversion to getting involved in court cases, Mr Fitzwilliams added: “The royals rightly avoid court appearances when possible as it is very difficult to predict what happens in a court case.
“The last senior royal who appeared as a witness in an important case was Edward VII when Prince of Wales in 1891.”
According to Mr Fitzwilliams, Meghan’s attack on the tabloids could “resonate” with her brother-in-law Prince William who is still thought to harbour resentment over what he perceives to be his late mother Princess Diana’s poor treatment at the hands of the press.
Mr Fitzwilliams added: “Meghan’s passionate attack on the tabloids when she lauded her success as a victory for decency and thus a victory for all, will resonate with the Royal Family, especially with William.
“He and Harry have never forgiven the media for hounding their mother and her success here, despite the risk involved, may help rebuild bridges with the rest of the Royal Family too.”
Ahead of his and Meghan’s royal stepdown last March, Prince Harry was believed to have been on poor terms with his brother Prince William and had previously said they were “on different paths.”
Since then Meghan and Harry have ditched the UK and settled in the USA where they have gained financial independence from the Royal Family.
— to www.express.co.uk