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Meet Prince Harry and Meghan's robust legal team including Princess Diana's former lawyer

The first hearing took place on Friday 24 April

Danielle Stacey

The Duchess of Sussex is being represented by some of the top lawyers in the country in her privacy case against Associated Newspapers, over the publication of a private letter Meghan sent to her father in August 2018. Meghan instructed Schillings last year, one of the leading law firms in reputation management, which has represented a number of high profile clients over the years, including author JK Rowling and Kate Winslet's husband, Edward Abel Smith.

READ: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's concerned text messages to Thomas Markle revealed in court documents

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WATCH: Harry and Meghan's departure from royal life

Barrister David Sherborne, who is acting for the Duchess in the court case, specialises in privacy, confidentiality and defamation, as well as matrimonial and sports law. He has previous links to royalty, having represented Prince Harry's late mother Diana, Princess of Wales. His other famous clients have included Cherie and Tony Blair, Donald and Melania Trump, Chelsea Clinton, Sir Paul McCartney, Kate Moss, David Walliams, Sir Elton John and David Furnish, the Spice Girls and Cheryl Cole, to name a few. A University of Oxford alumni, Mr Sherborne also worked on the Leveson Inquiry and has led high-profile phone hacking claims for celebrities, including Hugh Grant.

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Barrister David Sherborne in 2011

Ahead of the first hearing on Friday, text messages from the Duchess to her father, Thomas Markle, in the lead-up to the royal wedding in May 2018, were disclosed in legal documents.

On 15 May 2018, Meghan texted her dad saying: "I've been reaching out to you all weekend but you're not taking any of our calls or replying to any texts. Very concerned about your health and safety and have taken every measure to protect you but not sure what more we can do if you don't respond. Do you need help? Can we send the security team down again? I'm very sorry to hear you're in the hospital but need you to please get in touch with us ... What hospital are you at?"

The Duchess sent another text about ten minutes later, saying: "Harry and I made a decision earlier today and are dispatching the same security guys you turned away this weekend to be a presence on the ground to make sure you're safe ... they will be there at your disposal as soon as you need them. Please, please call as soon as you can.. all of this is incredibly concerning but your health is most important."

MORE: Meghan Markle's wedding dress designer reveals what it was like working with royal bride

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Harry and Meghan during their last public appearance in the UK

Mr Markle responded by saying he would be in hospital for a few days but was OK, and refused the offer of security.

Harry then sent a further message from his wife's phone to provide Mr Markle with details of the security team, and asked his father-in-law to speak to him about letting a security guard return to Mr Markle's house, according to the court papers.

Mr Sherborne said in the documents: "The claimant's husband pleaded with Mr Markle to let them help him."

Meghan was represented by Mr Sherborne at the hearing on Friday, which took place virtually in front of the High Court's Mr Justice Warby (of the Queen's Bench Division). It is understood that the Duke and Duchess listened to the hearing remotely from their home in Los Angeles.

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