Meghan Markle Accuses Tabloid of 'Dehumanizing Practices' After Court Win

Meghan Markle accused a U.K. tabloid of "illegal and dehumanizing practices" as she won her privacy lawsuit—and thanked Prince Harry and her mother Doria Ragland.

The Duchess of Sussex won an emphatic victory against The Mail on Sunday for publishing a letter she had sent her father about the breakdown in their relationship.

A judge ruled in her favor without the need for a trial, which could have led to her facing hostile questioning in the witness box from the newspaper's lawyers.

Meghan has also avoided being forced to disclose other private messages to support her case.

A Mail on Sunday spokesperson told Newsweek the newspaper was "surprised" and considering whether or not to appeal.

Meghan said in a statement released to Newsweek: "After two long years of pursuing litigation, I am grateful to the courts for holding Associated Newspapers and The Mail on Sunday to account for their illegal and dehumanizing practices.

Meghan Markle Commonwealth Day Service 2020
Meghan Markle attends the Commonwealth Day Service at Westminster Abbey on March 9, 2020. The Duchess of Sussex has sued the Mail on Sunday for breach of privacy and copyright. Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty

"These tactics (and those of their sister publications MailOnline and the Daily Mail) are not new; in fact, they've been going on for far too long without consequence.

"For these outlets, it's a game. For me and so many others, it's real life, real relationships, and very real sadness.

"The damage they have done and continue to do runs deep."

Meghan's letter was described by her lawyers as "a heartfelt plea from an anguished daughter to her father."

Sent three months after her wedding to Harry in May 2018, it begged him to stop speaking to the media and outlined the pain his interviews had caused her.

Thomas Markle missed the Windsor Castle ceremony after it was revealed that he had staged photos with a paparazzi photographer and he later suffered two heart attacks.

At the time, he gave interviews to the website TMZ and refused help from Meghan and Harry, according to court filings.

The duchess' lawyers claimed a series of Mail stories quoting the handwritten note had breached her privacy and copyright, but the newspaper claimed she had always intended the message to be made public.

The tabloid's lawyers argued that the letter was part of a media strategy to get her side of the story into the public domain.

The judge ruled in her favor on the privacy claim, but said a trial would be needed to determine aspects of the copyright issue.

Meghan said in her statement: "The world needs reliable, fact-checked, high-quality news.

"What the Mail on Sunday and its partner publications do is the opposite.

"We all lose when misinformation sells more than truth, when moral exploitation sells more than decency, and when companies create their business model to profit from people's pain.

"But for today, with this comprehensive win ... we have all won.

"We now know, and hope it creates legal precedent, that you cannot take somebody's privacy and exploit it in a privacy case, as the defendant has blatantly done over the past two years.

"I share this victory with each of you—because we all deserve justice and truth, and we all deserve better.

"I particularly want to thank my husband, mom and legal team, and especially Jenny Afia for her unrelenting support throughout this process."

A Mail on Sunday spokesperson told Newsweek: "We are very surprised by today's summary judgment and disappointed at being denied the chance to have all the evidence heard and tested in open court at a full trial.

"We are carefully considering the judgment's contents and will decide in due course whether to lodge an appeal."

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