Prince Harry unexpectedly withdrew his libel case against a British newspaper on Friday – just hours before the relevant documents were due to be handed over to the High Court.
Lawyers for the disgruntled duke, 39, announced at 10am on Friday that he was “staying” the case against The Mail on Sunday. The Telegraph reported.
Harry now faces having to pay the newspaper's $316,774.25 fee as well as his lawyer, which could result in a bill totaling more than $950,000.
The California-based prince's decision to drop the case was first reported by the Mail on Sunday's sister newspaper, the Daily Mail.
The Telegraph newspaper explained that Harry filed a lawsuit against Associated Newspapers Limited over an article published in February 2022 in which he accused him of misleading the public about his willingness to pay for his personal security.
It is known that Harry and his wife, Meghan Markle, lost their personal security when they stepped down from royal duties in 2020.
The Mail on Sunday claimed in the article that Harry only offered to pay for his protection after he lodged a legal complaint against the Home Office.
In December, he lost his bid to have the newspaper's defence dismissed, meaning the claim will move to the High Court, where Harry will have to prove that the story actually caused “serious harm”, the Telegraph reported.
The publisher, Justice Nicklin, ruling at the time, had “a real prospect of showing that an honest person would have taken the view” that Harry's depiction of his security struggle was “a masterclass in the art of flirtation”.
The deadline for both sides to submit documents relevant to the claim was Friday.
The libel case is one of several brought by the Duke against popular media outlets.
Harry and six other celebrities – including Elton John – also sued Associated Newspapers over allegations of phone tapping and other illegal activity.
With mail wires
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