The BBC is moving forward with the appointment of former Chief Justice John Dyson to lead an independent investigation into the circumstances surrounding a 1995 television interview with the late Princess Diana.
The TV operator’s announcement Wednesday came after Diana’s brother, Charles Spencer, recently renewed allegations that BBC journalist Martin Bashir used false statements and false allegations to persuade Diana to agree to the interview, which Reuters said was watched by over 20 million in the UK.
In an interview 25 years ago, Diana said “there were three of us in this marriage,” mentioning Prince Charles’ relationship with his Camilla Parker-Bowles, whom he married after Diana̵
The investigation will examine whether the steps taken by both the BBC and Bashir, now 57, were appropriate and to what extent these actions influenced Diana’s decision to give the interview at the time.
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The BBC described Dyson, a former Supreme Court judge, as “a prominent and highly respected figure who will lead an in-depth trial”.
Charles Spencer, who is seeking an investigation and an apology, claims that during a 1995 interview, Bashir made false and slanderous allegations about high-ranking royalty to gain Spencer’s trust in addition to access to Diana.
Allegations include: Diana’s phone was tapped, her bodyguard conspired, and two senior royal aides were paid to keep Diana under surveillance. Spencer claims Bashir showed him “fake bank statements” to support his claims.
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When the complaints first surfaced, the BBC conducted an internal investigation, claiming that Bashir had admitted to ordering mocked documents, but television said the documents did not play any role in Diana’s decision to do the interview.
BBC Director-General Tim Davey said the broadcaster was “determined to find out the truth about these events”.
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According to Reuters, Bashir did not comment publicly to the press, and the BBC said he was on sick leave from his position as editor of religion.
The Associated Press contributed to this report