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Meghan Markle's lawyer lists numerous inaccuracies in biography Finding Freedom

Her legal team has lodged a statement with the High Court

Gemma Strong

The Duchess of Sussex's legal team have dismissed numerous claims made in the biography Finding Freedom as "extremely anodyne" or "inaccurate".

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In a witness statement lodged with the High Court in London, as part of Meghan's privacy case against the Mail on Sunday, lawyer Jenny Afia raised a number of anecdotes and claims included in the book, which was written by Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand.

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She accused the authors of using information already widely available in tabloid stories, and listed "inaccurate" details, including information about the couple's first drinks together and contents of their text messages.

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The Mail on Sunday is fighting to have details of Finding Freedom included in the trial, arguing the book demonstrates that Meghan had permitted personal details of her life to be shared with Omid and Carolyn.

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Meghan has denied cooperating with the authors of Finding Freedom

However, the Duchess has denied cooperating with the authors, with Omid also issuing a statement confirming: "Any suggestion that the duke and duchess collaborated on the book is false."

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Ms Afia listed a number of stories from the book, claiming the "vast majority of these are either extremely anodyne and / or I understand are the product of creative license and / or are inaccurate".

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Details of the couple's first date have been labelled "incorrect"

Among those included is the description of Meghan's first date with Prince Harry in London. Ms Afia said the details of Harry's thoughts about their meeting had been taken from their engagement interview with the BBC, while "the remainder of the content… including what they drank, what they talked about and the contents of their texts after the date" was labelled "incorrect".

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The account of Harry's first meeting with Meghan's mother, Doria Ragland, was also based on the authors' "creative licence", she stated. It had been claimed that the meeting took place in the couple's "temporary LA digs", where they had enjoyed "the most delicious sashimi".

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Harry and Meghan pictured with her mother, Doria Ragland

But Ms Afia contested: "I understand that in fact The Duke of Sussex did not meet the Claimant's mother for the first time in Los Angeles.

"Indeed, the first time he and the Claimant were ever in Los Angeles together was in 2020 when they relocated with their son."

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Meanwhile, a "very detailed" account of Harry and Meghan’s 2016 holiday to Botswana was also dismissed with the Duchess’s legal team stating she had never been on that named safari, nor had the couple ever visited that particular camp together.

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Ms Afia denied that Harry had sent a text message to his father

Harry's feelings following the birth of their son Archie were also brushed off as "creative licence", while a text supposedly sent from the Duke to his father, Prince Charles, was also denied. "I understand it is widely known that the Prince of Wales does not have a mobile phone," the statement read.

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The legal papers also dismissed the claim that Meghan had sent her father, Thomas Markle, a "final message".

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Harry and Meghan now live in LA with their son, Archie

"This is evidently not correct as the Claimant has, in this case, provided the full exchanges between her and her father in the run up to the wedding," said Ms Afia.

"Her last message to him was on 17 May 2018 at 12.26. It follows that the rest of that section of the Book, which refers to the Claimant calling a friend on FaceTime from the bath and talking about the 'final message' to her father, is also incorrect."

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