5 OCTOBER 2007

Chauffeur Henri Paul may have tipped off the paparazzi tracking Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed, the inquest into her death has heard.

Thursday's revelation came as jurors also viewed intimate footage of the lovers in their last moments, fingers entwined and obviously sharing a close relationship.

In the two hours before the couple left the Ritz in Paris, the driver, who was also the hotel's head of security, was seen talking to photographers at the front of the building on three separate occasions.

Until that point none of the snappers had positioned themselves at the rear exit from which Diana and Dodi would later leave. After speaking to Mr Paul three photographers went to the back of the establishment, where he gestured in what appeared to be a signal.

The legal team acting for Dodi's father Mohammed Al Fayed also pointed out that for eight and a half minutes Mr Paul disappeared from the view of CCTV cameras. A period of time during which his movements cannot be accounted for.

Photo: ©
Fingers entwined behind Diana's back, the Princess and her lover share an intimate moment before leaving the Ritz. Jurors at the inquest were told on Thursday that the hotel's head of security, Henri Paul, spoke to snappers waiting at the front of the hotel and then, when three of them went round the back - where the couple were preparing to leave - he appeared to signal to them Photo: © PAClick on photo to enlarge