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What Prince Harry told 60 Minutes about tabloids

Prince Harry: The 60 Minutes Interview
Prince Harry: The 60 Minutes Interview 26:52

Prince Harry, who appeared in court Tuesday for a U.K. tabloid phone-hacking trial, blasted what the royal called the "utterly vile" actions of some British tabloids. 

Harry testified as part of his lawsuit against Britain's Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN), accusing the publisher of hacking phones to gain information. The 38-year-old second son of King Charles III has spoken out against tabloids in the past. 

In a January interview with 60 Minutes, the Duke of Sussex told Anderson Cooper he's felt frustration with the British press since he was a child. His mother, her boyfriend Dodi al-Fayed and their driver Henri Paul died in a car crash after they were pursued by paparazzi in a Paris tunnel. 

"It was obvious to us as kids the British press' part in our mother's misery," Harry said. 

Harry has also accused British tabloids of being racist in their coverage of his wife, Meghan. Soon after their relationship became public, Harry insisted on putting out a statement condemning some of the tabloid coverage of Meghan and what he called "the racial undertones of comment pieces." In his memoir, "Spare," Harry wrote that his father and brother were furious that Harry wanted to put out a statement.

"They felt as though it made them look bad," he said. "They felt as though they didn't have a chance or weren't able to do that for their partners. What Meghan had to go through was similar in some part to what Kate and what Camilla went through, very different circumstances. But then you add in the race element, which was what the press, British press jumped on straight away. I went into this incredibly naïve. I had no idea the British press were so bigoted."

Harry said Meghan's status as a biracial American actress who'd gone through a divorce became a "feeding frenzy for the British press."

"You know, my family read the tabloids, you know? It's laid out at breakfast when everyone comes together. So, whether you walk around saying you believe it or not, it's still, it's still leaving an imprint in your mind," he said. "So if you have that judgment based on a stereotype right at the beginning, it's very, very hard to get over that. And a large part of it for the family, but also the British press and numerous other people is, like, 'He's changed. She must be a witch. He's changed.' As opposed to 'yeah, I did change, and I'm really glad I changed.'"

Harry is the first senior member of the royal family to testify in court in over a century. During his January interview with Cooper, Harry said he doesn't feel he needs to keep everything close to the vest. 

"You know, the family motto is never complain, never explain. But it's just a motto. And it doesn't really hold," he said.

In January, Harry said he would never leak information about his family. 

"So now, trying to speak a language that perhaps they understand, I will sit here and speak truth to you with the words that come out of my mouth, rather than using someone else, an unnamed source, to feed in lies or a narrative to a tabloid media that literally radicalizes its readers to then potentially cause harm to my family, my wife, my kids," he told 60 Minutes. 

In the past, Harry has alleged he's been used by his family to get better tabloid coverage. In his memoir, he wrote Queen Camilla "sacrificed me on her personal PR altar."

"If you are led to believe, as a member of the family, that being on the front page, having positive headlines, positive stories written about you, is going to improve your reputation or increase the chances of you being accepted as monarch by the British public, then that's what you're gonna do."

Harry is set to return to court Wednesday for further testimony in the case. 

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