The former nanny of the Duke of Cambridge received a significant compensation from BBC over “false and malicious” allegations used to obtain Martin Bashir’s 1995 Panorama interview with Diana, Princess of Wales.
Alexandra Pettyfer, better known as Tiggy Legge-Bourke, appeared at London’s High Court to publicly apologize to the broadcaster for “fabricated” allegations about her affair with the Prince of Wales while working as Charles’ personal assistant in 1995.
Her lawyer, Louise Prince, told the court that the allegations had “serious personal consequences for all concerned”.
As well as the affair allegation, the court was told that Legge-Bourke was falsely accused of being pregnant with Charles’ child and having abortions.
Prince said her client had not known the source of the allegations for the past 25 years, but it was now likely that “the false and malicious allegations arose as a result of and in the context of BBC Panorama’s efforts to obtain an exclusive interview with Diana, Princess of Wales”.
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The court was told that Dyson’s investigation, commissioned by the broadcaster, had “shed light” on how the interview was conducted.
The lawyer said the “totally unfounded” allegations “appeared to capitalize on some previous false assumptions in the media” about Legge-Bourke and Charles.
“After Diana, Princess of Wales, learned of the allegations in late 1995, she became upset with the plaintiff for no apparent reason,” she added.
Prince said Legge-Bourke “holds the BBC to account for the serious impact of the false and malicious allegations.
“Had the BBC not caved in, the plaintiff and her family could have been spared 25 years of lies, suspicion and anguish.”