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The head of Britain’s BBC revealed Monday that the corporation would be investigating how a journalist convinced the late Princess Diana to participate in a famous 1995 interview in which the princess admitted to an affair and divulged details about her marriage to Prince Charles, the heir to the throne.
This month, Diana’s brother Charles Spencer alleged that Martin Bashir, who conducted the interview for the BBC’s “Panorama” program, convinced her to participate by using fake documents to make it seem that people connected to the British royal family were selling information about Diana.
According to Spencer, Bashir told Diana that she was being bugged by the security services and that two senior aides were being paid to divulge information about her. Bashir also allegedly provided fake bank statements to support his claims.
“Many people are, quite understandably, asking why I’ve waited till now to come forward with the truth about how the @BBCPanorama with my sister came about,” Spencer tweeted on Sunday.
“While I knew that Martin Bashir used fake bank statements and other dishonesty to get my sister to do the interview, what I only found out 2 weeks ago, thanks to journalist Andy Webb’s persistent use of the Freedom of Information Act, is that the BBC also knew. Not only knew about it, but that they covered it up.”
The BBC released a statement Monday stating that it takes the allegations “very seriously.”
“The BBC is taking this very seriously and we want to get to the truth,” Tim Davie, the BBC’s director general said in a statement about Spencer’s claims, Reuters reported. “We are in the process of commissioning a robust and independent investigation.”
Bashir has yet to comment on the matter, and Reuters was unable to reach him. However, according to the BBC, the journalist, who is currently the corporation’s religious affairs correspondent, is on sick leave after recovering from heart surgery and contracting the COVID-19 novel coronavirus.