Princess Diana’s brother Earl Spencer says he was ‘groomed’ by Martin Bashir to secure ‘fraudulent’ interview – Fox News | Region & Cash

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Princess Diana’s brother, Earl Charles Spencer, opens up about the fraudulent methods used by Martin Bashir to secure a bombshell interview with the late king that still makes headlines today.

Last week, the BBC announced they will pay a former royal nanny for Bashir’s “completely unfounded allegations” about her, which were used to score a 1995 TV session with Diana. An official BBC investigation has revealed that Bashir, 59, manipulated Diana into believing Alexandra Pettifer, formerly known as Tiggy Legge-Bourke, was having an affair with Prince Charles. Bashir produced fake bank statements to support his claim.

The 9th Earl Spencer, 58, has urged police to continue investigating the matter. In an op-ed for The Mail on Sunday, Spencer said Bashir manipulated him into getting close to his sister.

“I felt like I was being groomed… I was shown fake bank statements; I’ve been told of fraudulent payments, espionage and horrific deception,” Spencer said. “But I was the one being tricked all along into Mr. Bashir getting access to my late sister.”

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Charles Spencer, 9th Earl Spencer urges police to continue their investigation.
(David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for Charles Sabine)

Spencer said Diana was “extremely vulnerable” at the time when information she shared with close friends was leaked to the press.

“She was understandably shocked by that,” Spencer explained. “In retrospect, I suspect she was a very early victim of ‘phone hacking’ by unknown perpetrators, but in 1995 nobody knew about this criminal practice, so she accepted the outrageous claims that dark forces were at work.”

“The question I keep getting asked by concerned members of the public who are angry at what my sister has been going through is why have the police not prosecuted those involved for what is clearly unlawful and criminal conduct that has been reported to me by several high-ranking lawyers?” Spencer continued. “I hope the police will reconsider their responsibility in this matter. Only she has the power to get to the bottom of this horrific scandal that made Diana feel even more exposed and alone, leading her to renounce those who cared for her and would have protected her.”

Spencer noted that the lies told to Diana “prompted her to speak in a manner that set her on a course where she was without proper protection when she needed it most”.

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Martin Bashir interviews Princess Diana at Kensington Palace for Panorama.

Martin Bashir interviews Princess Diana at Kensington Palace for Panorama.
(Photo by Pool Photographer)

“All those responsible must be held accountable,” Spencer added.

The BBC apologized to the former nanny of Prince William and Prince Harry for “false and malicious” claims made against her as part of Bashir’s attempt to get an exclusive interview with Diana.

Pettifer appeared in London’s High Court for the public apology. Her lawyers told the court the allegations would result in “serious personal consequences for all involved.”

BBC director general Tim Davie said the company had agreed to pay Pettifer “significant damages”. The broadcaster “failed to ask the tough questions” about how the Diana interview came about, he added.

BBC PAYS ‘SIGNIFICANT DAMAGES’ TO PRINCE WILLIAM, PRINCE HARRY’S EX-NANNY FOR ‘FRAUDULENT’ INTERVIEW

Alexandra Pettifer, formerly known as Tiggy Legge-Bourke, appeared in London's High Court for a public apology from the network over false claims that she had an affair with Prince Charles while working as his personal assistant in 1995.

Alexandra Pettifer, formerly known as Tiggy Legge-Bourke, appeared in London’s High Court for a public apology from the network over false claims that she had an affair with Prince Charles while working as his personal assistant in 1995.
(Photo by Mark Cuthbert)

“I would like to take this opportunity to publicly apologize to her, the Prince of Wales and the Dukes of Cambridge and Sussex for the manner in which Princess Diana was deceived and the resulting impact on their lives.” , Davie said in a statement.

William and Harry have slammed the BBC for its shortcomings after an investigation found Bashir used fraudulent means to secure the explosive Diana interview in 1995.

In the interview, a major scoop for Bashir, Diana famously said that “there were three of us in this marriage” — referencing Charles’ relationship with Camilla Parker-Bowles. Her candid account of her failed marriage to the Prince of Wales was followed by millions and shook the monarchy.

Pettifer’s attorney, Louise Prince, said the former nanny has not known the source of the allegations against her for the past 25 years. But it now seemed likely that the allegations arose as part of the BBC’s effort to source Diana’s interview, Prince said.

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Prince William (right) and Prince Harry have slammed the BBC for its shortcomings after an investigation revealed one of their journalists, Martin Bashir, used fraudulent means to secure the explosive Diana interview in 1995.

Prince William (right) and Prince Harry have slammed the BBC for its shortcomings after an investigation revealed one of their journalists, Martin Bashir, used fraudulent means to secure the explosive Diana interview in 1995.
(Getty)

The false claims — including a claim that Pettifer became pregnant with Charles’ baby and had an abortion — appeared to capitalize on previous false media speculation, the attorney said.

She said Diana confronted Pettifer about the allegation in late 1995 and told a member of the royal household that she had a hospital letter proving the abortion had taken place.

“Since the abortion claim was completely false, such a letter could only have been fabricated,” Prince said.

Davie said the channel would never air the Diana interview again or license it to other channels.

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On August 31, 1997, Princess Diana died in a car accident in Paris while being pursued by the paparazzi.  she was 36

On August 31, 1997, Princess Diana died in a car accident in Paris while being pursued by the paparazzi. she was 36
(Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archives/Getty Image)

Pettifer said after the hearing that she was disappointed that legal action was needed.

The BBC has already paid damages to Diana’s former assistant, as well as a former BBC producer who was fired after alerting editors to fake documents Bashir had used to gain access to Diana.

Bashir has since stepped down from his role as the BBC’s religion editor and has issued a statement apologizing for his behaviour. The BBC’s director of news and current affairs at the time, Tony Hall, also resigned after the investigation.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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