Prince Harry Said Newspapers Hacking His Phone Made Him Suspicious of His Friends

In newly seen legal documents, Prince Harry said he became paranoid and suspected friends of leaking information about him after journalists hacked his phone.

london, england january 16 prince harry, duke of sussex hosts the rugby league world cup 2021 draws for the mens, womens and wheelchair tournaments at buckingham palace on january 16, 2020 in london, england photo by samir husseinwireimage
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Prince Harry revealed the damaging personal impact of journalists hacking his phone in newly seen legal documents issued last September at the High Court in London, the Times reports. Harry is suing two major publishers for allegedly hacking his phone, the Times revealed last October: News Group Newspapers, which owns The Sun and formerly owned the now defunct News of the World, and Mirror Group Newspapers, which publishes the Daily Mirror and Sunday Mirror. 

Harry is suing for more than £200,000 (about $265,000) in damages, claiming that journalists targeted him since he was 12. After newspapers published stories sourced from Harry's hacked phone, the Duke of Sussex said, he became paranoid and suspected his close friends and family of leaking information about him. Ultimately, the Times reports, he suffered "a complete breakdown in trust." In particular, Harry drew attention to articles about his relationship with ex-girlfriend Chelsy Davy, who he dated on and off until 2010.

Harry said that voicemails frequently disappeared from his inbox while he failed to receive messages from friends and family. He also received numerous missed calls from unfamiliar numbers. Photographers and journalists would turn up without Harry publicly disclosing his location, a potential security risk.

The Duke of Sussex said journalists became increasingly intrusive after the death of Princess Diana in 1997, intensifying the pain of his loss. They continued to hack his phone until at least 2011, he alleged. Harry is seeking "aggravated damages" for a "gross violation" of his right to a private life, the Times reports.


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Emily Dixon
Morning Editor

Emily Dixon is a British journalist who’s contributed to CNN, Teen Vogue, Time, Glamour, The Guardian, Wonderland, The Big Roundtable, Bust, and more, on everything from mental health to fashion to political activism to feminist zine collectives. She’s also a committed Beyoncé, Kacey Musgraves, and Tracee Ellis Ross fan, an enthusiastic but terrible ballet dancer, and a proud Geordie lass.