Thomas Markle 'lied to Prince Harry about paparazzi photos before hanging up on him'

Andy Wells

Meghan Markle’s father has admitted to lying to Prince Harry about a series of staged photos in the run up to their wedding.

Thomas Markle said he had told his future son-in-law that the photos, that showed him running up a hill lifting weights and getting measured for a wedding suit, had not been deliberately set up.

But in the Channel 5 documentary Thomas Markle: My Story, Mr Markle, who believes his daughter will never see him again, admitted he was paid for the photos after he was painted as a “dumb, fat slob” by the media.

He told the documentary: “I got approached by a guy who spoke to me and said, ‘I can change your image’.

Thomas Markle revealed that he lied to Prince Harry and hung up on him (Splash/Getty)
Thomas Markle revealed that he lied to Prince Harry and hung up on him (Splash/Getty)
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“The idea was that these would all be candid shots, discreet, no one would know they were posed or anything.

“But he keeps saying, ‘You’ve got to trust me. I’ve done this a hundred times.’”

After Prince Harry phoned him to question him about whether he set up the photos, Mr Markle added: “I denied it. And of course that was a lie. I lied to him. I’m not proud of that, but I did.”

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Mr Markle admitted the deal would “haunt me for the rest of my life”, and spoke of how he hung up on Harry when he called to tell him off for setting it up.

Mr Markle recalled: “Harry said to me, 'If you had listened to me, this wouldn't have happened to you'.

“I said to him, ‘It's too bad I didn't die because then you guys could pretend you were sad,' and then I hung up on them. I was done.”

January 20th 2020 - Buckingham Palace has announced that Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan will no longer use "royal highness" titles and will not receive public money for their royal duties. Additionally, as part of the terms of surrendering their royal responsibilities, Harry and Meghan will repay the $3.1 million cost of taxpayers' money that was spent renovating Frogmore Cottage - their home near Windsor Castle. - January 9th 2020 - Prince Harry The Duke of Sussex and Duchess Meghan of Sussex intend to step back their duties and responsibilities as senior members of the British Royal Family. - File Photo by: zz/KGC-03/STAR MAX/IPx 2018 5/19/18 Prince Harry The Duke of Sussex and Meghan Markle The Duchess of Sussex - man and wife - at their wedding ceremony held at St. George's Chapel on the grounds of Windsor Castle. (Windsor, England, UK)
The pictures were published in the run up to Harry and Meghan's wedding (AP)
January 20th 2020 - Buckingham Palace has announced that Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan will no longer use "royal highness" titles and will not receive public money for their royal duties. Additionally, as part of the terms of surrendering their royal responsibilities, Harry and Meghan will repay the $3.1 million cost of taxpayers' money that was spent renovating Frogmore Cottage - their home near Windsor Castle. - January 9th 2020 - Prince Harry The Duke of Sussex and Duchess Meghan of Sussex intend to step back their duties and responsibilities as senior members of the British Royal Family. - File Photo by: zz/KGC-178/STAR MAX/IPx 2019 9/23/19 Prince Harry The Duke of Sussex and Meghan The Duchess of Sussex visit Cape Town, South Africa.
Mr Markle told Prince Harry that the photos were not staged (AP)

Despite his regrets of setting up the photos, Mr Markle went on to say he would continue to cash in on his daughter, telling her that it was “time to look after daddy”.

He said: “I’m going to defend myself and I’m going to be paid for it. I don’t care.

“At this point, they owe me. The royals owe me. Harry owes me, Meghan owes me. What I’ve been through I should be rewarded for…

“I’m in my senior years now — it’s time to look after daddy.”

Despite his admissions in the documentary, Mr Markle said he wanted the documentary to show he is “not all the trashy things” being said about him.