Martin Bashir ‘tells inquiry it was DIANA who came up with ‘smears’ against the royals’ which he is accused of telling her to secure his Panorama interview – including that Charles was in love with his children’s nanny
- He refutes accusations he concocted lies that convinced Diana to speak out
- He insists smears about members of the royal family were misattributed to him
- Mr Bashir is said to have told the inquiry these claims are so obviously fanciful
Martin Bashir has denied inventing smears against the royals to land his interview with Diana – reportedly telling an inquiry they came from the Princess herself.
Instead he insists smears about senior members of the royal family were misattributed to him in notes made at the time by Earl Spencer.
Last year Diana’s brother Earl Spencer revealed a string of falsehoods Bashir allegedly told Diana to gain her trust, including cruelly playing to her paranoia by pretending he had evidence her staff were spying on her to newspapers and MI5.
Mr Bashir is said to have told the inquiry these claims are so obviously fanciful that he could not have made them up as Diana would have easily fact-checked them.
Martin Bashir has denied inventing smears against the royals to land his interview with Diana – reportedly telling an inquiry they came from the Princess herself
The BBC religious affairs editor allegedly faked bank statements to trick the princess into taking part in the infamous 1995 Panorama broadcast
As a 32-year-old relatively unknown broadcaster, Mr Bashir bagged the TV scoop of the century when he sat down with Diana for Panorama in 1995.
The Princess famously recalled how there were ‘three of us’ in the marriage and her account of Charles’s adultery shook the monarchy to its core.
Following the interview the Queen is understood to have demanded the couple divorce.
Mr Bashir’s reputation has since been tainted by accusations he made a series of shocking false claims to clinch the interview.
According to notes made at the time by Earl Spencer, Mr Bashir told Diana her private correspondence was being opened, her car tracked and phoned tapped.
Instead he insists smears about senior members of the royal family were misattributed to him in notes made at the time by Earl Spencer (pictured)
He said her bodyguard was plotting against her and that the intelligence services had taped Charles and his private secretary planning the ‘end game’.
He is also alleged to have falsely claimed that the Prince of Wales was besotted with the children’s nanny Tiggy Legge-Bourke, and the pair had holidayed.
And he is further said to have lied that Prince Edward was having treatment for Aids and the Queen was a ‘comfort eater’ with ‘heart problems’.
Mr Bashir has admitted forging fake bank statements, which he then used to win over Diana’s brother, Earl Spencer, also says the Princess never saw them.
At one meeting, Mr Bashir showed Diana’s brother the fake bank statements that he ordered a blameless BBC graphics artist to forge, purporting to show Earl Spencer’s security head was in the pocket of a newspaper group.
Following the accusations against Mr Bashir published in the autumn by the Daily Mail, the BBC launched an internal inquiry overseen by Lord Dyson, the former Master of the Rolls, into the methods he used to secure the interview.
Struck down by Covid and then recovering from a quadruple heart bypass, it was unclear until now if Mr Bashir was cooperating with the inquiry.
Mr Bashir has told Lord Dyson that many of the allegations were consistent with Diana telling him on a later occasion that she spoke with mystics and clairvoyants, according to The Telegraph.
Lord Dyson, who is expected to heavily criticise Bashir as well as senior corporation executives, will deliver his findings late next month or in early May.