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Prince Harry set to testify as unique legal connection with Princess Anne revealed

The Duke of Sussex will be returning to London soon as his court case continues

Prince Harry departs the Royal Courts of Justice on March 30, 2023 © Getty
Diane Shipley
Senior Online Writer
June 1, 2023
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Prince Harry is expected to return to London next week as a witness in the trial brought against Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN) by the Prince and other high-profile figures over alleged unlawful information gathering, including phone hacking. 

It will mark the first time in more than 20 years that a member of the royal family has testified in court since Harry's aunt, Princess Anne.

WATCH: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry make very unusual entrance at awards ceremony

The Princess Royal had to appear in court back in 2002, when she pleaded guilty to a charge under the Dangerous Dogs Act after her pet dog Dotty, an English Bull Terrier, bit two children in Windsor Great Park. 

Anne was fined £500 for the attack and ordered to pay £250 in compensation and £148 in costs while Dotty was ordered to undergo training.

Prince Harry at Westminster Abbey on May 6, 2023© Getty
Prince Harry will return to London soon

Harry is one of four representative claimants whose cases have been selected for the trial. The others are Coronation Street actors Michael Turner and Nikki Sanderson and comedian Paul Whitehouse’s ex-wife Fiona Wightman. 

Princess Anne appeared in court in 2002© Getty
Princess Anne appeared in court in 2002

The father-of-two is expected to arrive on Monday and take the stand the following day. He'll make the trip after his youngest child, Princess Lilibet, turns two on Sunday, 4 June. 

He was last in the country for King Charles and Queen Camilla's coronation on 6 May, although he left immediately following the ceremony, not attending any celebratory events or the coronation concert, perhaps in part because the event was held on the same day as his son Archie's fourth birthday. 

Prince Harry leaves after the Coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla
The Prince leaving King Charles III and Queen Camilla's coronation

It is unlikely that Harry will get the chance to reunite with his father, as the monarch has a trip to Transylvania planned, staying in his remote, rustic farmhouse in the small village of Viscri which he bought in 2006. 

He is expected to spend at least a week in the rural location but will also have the opportunity to meet with the country's president, Klaus Iohannis, during his trip.

Prince Harry seen lighting the candle on his daughter's first birthday cake© Netflix
Prince Harry lighting the candle on his daughter's first birthday cake

 Typically, he spends a couple of days a year in the area and the guest house is then rented out to the public. It's known as the Blue House, and features seven double bedrooms with en-suites, a drawing and dining room, a sitting room and a kitchen.

Charles' Romanian home has a rustic feel© Facebook
Charles' Romanian home has a rustic feel

 The guest house has its own outdoor breakfast barn, complete with an enormous bread oven. Having stepped back from royal life in early 2020, Harry and his family have now happily settled in sunny Montecito, California, not far from Los Angeles, where his wife Meghan Markle grew up.

Prince Harry and Prince Charles, Prince of Wales attend the Gurkha 200 Pageant in 2015 © Getty
Prince Harry and his father in 2015

Their $14million mansion is the couple's private oasis, and they've retreated there since attending the Woman of Vision Awards 2023 in New York earlier this month, where the mother-of-two was honoured with a prestigious award. 

Prince Harry speaks to Princess Anne, Princess Royal during the Coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla © Getty
The Prince talking to his aunt at the coronation

The couple was subsequently involved in what they described as a "near catastrophic car chase" involving paparazzi photographers. 

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry smiling© Getty
Meghan and Harry moved to California after leaving royal life

The Duchess of Sussex benefits from living just two hours away from her mother Doria Ragland, with whom she's very close. Doria inherited her property in 2011, and it's heavenly, with photos of the exterior showing a clay roof, lime green exterior and palm trees framing either side of the front walkway.

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