Princess Diana’s brother has accused the BBC of a “whitewash” in a letter relating to fake bank statements which he claims were used to set up her famous Panorama interview.
In an emotional letter, Charles Spencer has demanded a full inquiry while slamming the organisation’s “sheer dishonesty”.
He also writes that he is “absolutely clear” that it “is all going to come out now” and accuses interviewer Martin Bashir of “yellow journalism”.
The letter comes after allegations about how the BBC got close enough to Diana to secure the interview, in which she opened up about life in the royal family and Charles and Camilla’s affair.
It was in the 1995 chat that she famously said: “There were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded”.
Earl Spencer says he was shown fake bank statements which stated that two members of royal staff were being paid large sums of cash to leak information about Diana to the security services.
After seeing the fake paperwork, Spencer introduced Diana to Bashir, who is currently extremely unwell with Covid, and they built up a friendship which eventually lead to the interview.
But Bashir claims he showed Spencer the statements after he agreed to make the introduction.
The BBC conducted an investigation into the fake statements in 1996, but found that the documents “were put to no use which had any bearing, direct or indirect, on the Panorama interview with the Princess of Wales”.
However Spencer disagrees, and is calling for a full investigation on the 25th anniversary of the interview.
According to the Mail, in an email last month he wrote: “If it were not for me seeing these statements, I would not have introduced Bashir to my sister.
“In turn, he would have remained just one of thousands of journalists hoping that he/she had a tiny chance of getting her to speak to them, with no realistic prospect of doing so.”
In the new letter, published by the Daily Mail, Spencer writes: “Your piecemeal apology of Wednesday seems to be a way for you merely to say that you’ve apologised to me, rather than acceptance of the full gravity of this situation.
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“I am now formally asking for the BBC to open an enquiry into this matter, and I hope – among many other questions that need addressing – that it will get to the bottom of key, interconnected questions: why did Tony Hall’s enquiry not seek the truth from me?
“Why did it bend over backwards to whitewash Bashir? Who knew the extent of his yellow journalism when securing what Hall calls the interview of the decade … or of the generation?’
“The sheer dishonesty of what I’ve seen in the BBC 25 years ago – both in Bashir and his colleague’s actions in securing the interview, and the whitewash under Tony Hall’s name – demands it.”
A spokesman for the BBC told Mirror Online: “The BBC has apologised. We are happy to repeat that apology.
“And while this was a quarter of a century ago, we absolutely will investigate – robustly and fairly – substantive new information.
“We have asked Earl Spencer to share any further information with the BBC.
“Unfortunately, we are hampered at the moment by the simple fact that we are unable to discuss any of this with Martin Bashir, as he is seriously unwell.
“When he is well, we will of course hold an investigation into these new issues.”