Prince Harry Accuses Royal Family of 'Withholding' Information From Him About Phone Hacking

'The Institution made it clear that we did not need to know anything about phone hacking,' the Duke of Sussex claimed.

Prince Harry is speaking out against the royal family. The latest royal drama happened on Tuesday when, as part of The Duke of Sussex's lawsuit against Associated Newspapers Ltd (ANL), Harry submitted a witness statement that included claims against the so-called "Institution." ET has reached out to Buckingham Palace for comment.

In the lawsuit, Harry, along with public figures including Sir Elton John, Sadie Frost and Elizabeth Hurley, allege unlawful information gathering. The publisher "vigorously denies" all the claims against it, BBC reported.

In his witness statement, Harry, who is currently in London for the legal hearings, mentioned an alleged phone hacking scandal in 2005, the extent of which he claims he was not aware of until recently.

"My understanding was that a voicemail my brother had left for me had been accessed and published. Aside from that, I thought that the hacking had been confined to the phones of members of staff," Harry said. "I did not know that my phone had been hacked and thought that no one would be so stupid as to hack my own phone given the security implications and consequences of my private information and whereabouts ending up in the wrong hands."

Harry additionally stated that, from 2005, he "never had any interface or interaction with the family representative," whom he now believes "was clearly getting instructions from within the Institution not to involve myself or William about phone hacking by the News of the World."

"No one was ever brought together for a discussion and there were no structured meetings of any sort, certainly none that I was invited to or made aware of," he said. "... The Institution made it clear that we did not need to know anything about phone hacking and it was made clear to me that the Royal Family did not sit in the witness box because that could open up a can of worms."

"The Institution was without a doubt withholding information from me for a long time about NGN's phone hacking and that has only become clear in recent years as I have pursued my own claim with different legal advice and representation," Harry added.

Harry also noted that "The Institution had a strict 'no comment' policy which meant that even the worst or most suspicious articles were often never brought to my attention," adding that "There is this misconception that we are all in constant communication with one another but that is not true."

Harry's "uneasy relationship with the press" goes back to his mother, Princess Diana's, death in 1997.

"However, as a member of the Institution the policy was to 'never complain, never explain,'" Harry said. "There was no alternative; I was conditioned to accept it. For the most part, I accepted the interest in my performing my public functions."

All of that changed within the last few years, as Harry's relationship with Meghan Markle became public.

"In late 2016, when my relationship with Meghan, my now wife, became public, I started to become increasingly troubled by the approach of not taking action against the press in the wake of vicious persistent attacks on, harassment of and intrusive, sometimes racist articles concerning Meghan," he said. "The situation got worse after she became pregnant and when our son, Archie, was born."

Things didn't fully come to a head until four years later, as Harry explained, "It is not an exaggeration to say that the bubble burst in terms of what I knew in 2020 when I moved out of the United Kingdom."

With that bubble now burst, Harry said his reason for pursuing this legal action is simple.

"I am bringing this claim because I love my country and I remain deeply concerned by the unchecked power, influence and criminality of Associated," he said. "The evidence I have seen shows that Associated's journalists are criminals with journalistic powers which should concern every single one of us. The British public deserve to know the full extent of this cover up and I feel it is my duty to expose it."