Meghan Just Won A Major Legal Battle, And Her Response Was Powerful AF
She stood up for others afraid to fight injustice.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have faced intense scrutiny from the British tabloids for years. While the couple had ignored most of the sensational articles published about them, they finally had enough when U.K. tabloid the Mail on Sunday published parts of a private letter the Duchess of Sussex sent to her estranged father, Thomas Markle, in a series of articles in February 2019. That October, Meghan filed a lawsuit against the newspaper’s publisher, Associated Newspapers, for invading her privacy. The court battle dragged on for years until Dec. 2, 2021, when the Court of Appeal in London ruled in Meghan’s favor. The Duchess’ reaction to her legal victory was so powerful.
This comes months after a judge ruled in February 2021 that Associated Newspapers violated Meghan’s privacy by printing parts of her letter to her father throughout five articles in 2019. At the time, the Associated Newspapers announced it would appeal the ruling, but on Dec. 2, the Court of Appeal in London dismissed it. According to People, this means their case will not proceed to trial and Meghan will receive substantial financial damages from the Mail on Sunday. She’ll also get a public apology printed on the front page of the newspaper, as well as the homepage of the Mail Online.
In response to winning her years-long legal battle, Meghan released a statement that spoke to the importance of the ruling. “This is a victory not just for me, but for anyone who has ever felt scared to stand up for what's right,” her statement read. “While this win is precedent-setting, what matters most is that we are now collectively brave enough to reshape a tabloid industry that conditions people to be cruel, and profits from the lies and pain that they create.”
"From day one, I have treated this lawsuit as an important measure of right versus wrong. The defendant has treated it as a game with no rules," the statement continued. “The longer they dragged it out, the more they could twist facts and manipulate the public (even during the appeal itself), making a straightforward case extraordinarily convoluted in order to generate more headlines and sell more newspapers—a model that rewards chaos above truth.”
“In the nearly three years since this began, I have been patient in the face of deception, intimidation, and calculated attacks,” she added. “Today, the courts ruled in my favor — again — cementing that The Mail on Sunday, owned by Lord Jonathan Rothermere, has broken the law. The courts have held the defendant to account, and my hope is that we all begin to do the same. Because as far removed as it may seem from your personal life, it's not.”
Meghan finished her statement on a powerful note: "Tomorrow it could be you. These harmful practices don't happen once in a blue moon—they are a daily fail that divide us, and we all deserve better.”
Meghan sent her father the handwritten letter shortly after her wedding to Prince Harry in May 2018. In her message, she reportedly tried to talk to Thomas about his relationship with the press after he was accused of selling stories to British tabloids and staging a photoshoot with paparazzi days before she and Prince Harry walked down the aisle on May 19, 2018.
While Meghan’s battle with the British tabloids continues, her latest legal victory is a major step forward in her fight for privacy.