The BBC has announced that the broadcasting corporation has agreed to pay "significant compensation" to the former babysitter of Britain's Princes William and Harry for the highly criticized 1995 interview of the broadcaster with their mother, the late Princess Diana.
The decision to compensate Tiggy Legge-Bourke, now Alexandra Pettifer, was made because of false claims made about her by BBC journalist Martin Bashir in order to get an interview. In it, Diana confessed to an affair and revealed the intimate details of her failed marriage with the British heir to the throne, Prince Charles.
Last year, a report concluded that Bashir tricked Diana's brother into arranging a meeting with the princess by providing him with false bank statements indicating Diana was being tapped by security services and that two aides had been paid to leak information about her.
The report found that the broadcaster covered up the deception. "The BBC has agreed to pay substantial compensation to Mrs Pettifer," said BBC director-general Tim Davie. "I would like to take this opportunity to publicly apologize to her and at the same time apologize to the Prince of Wales and the Dukes of Cambridge and Susse_x for the manner in which Princess Diana was deceived."
They say they will never show the interview again
Local media reported that the BBC's lawyer told a London court that the TV company accepted the fact that the accusations against the babbysitter were "completely unfounded"
Davie also said that the BBC regrets that it failed to establish the facts immediately after the interview was broadcast, that is, at a time when "there were certain signs that indicated that the interview may have been improperly obtained"
He added that the BBC has decided that it will never show the interview again, nor will it be licensed to other broadcasters. Earlier this year, the BBC also agreed to pay substantial sums to Diana's former private secretary, Patrick Jephson, for a controversial interview.
Bashir apologized for the false statements, but said that he stands by the information he had a quarter of a century ago and that he does not believe that it prompted Diana to grant him the interview.