Joined: 13 Feb 2006
|Posted: Tue Apr 04, 2006 8:24 am Post subject: SPIES SABOTAGE DIANA INQUIRY
|SPIES SABOTAGE DIANA INQUIRY
Secret services in plot to hide truth over her death
3 Apr 2006
By John Chapman in London and Peter Allen in Paris
THE probe into Princess Diana’s death took a sinister twist last night as a top lawyer accused spies on both sides of the Channel of sabotage.
The claim will fuel fears of a cover-up orchestrated by the British and French secret services.
The intelligence agencies were supposed to help answer a series of questions set out by the Strasbourg-based European Court of Human Rights.
But a legal source close to the case, speaking to the Daily Express on condition of strict anonymity, has exposed this “co-operation” as a sham.
The lawyer revealed: “The French judiciary and police have been bad enough, but security agencies in both Britain and France have done everything possible to hamper the inquiry. They have done absolutely nothing to help answer vital questions and have stalled the judicial process.
“The feeling is that they know exactly what happened on the night Diana died, but do not want the truth to come out under any circumstances. The whole thing is extremely sinister.”
The intervention by the human rights court followed eight years during which the Paris authorities were accused of suppressing evidence and bungling vital forensic tests.
But the revelation that spies are still hampering the search for the truth is causing alarm.
The lawyer went on: “This has ranged from claiming that no spies were in Paris that
night – which is a complete lie – to interfering with vital evidence, and even with witnesses.”
The lawyer’s allegation has infuriated Harrods boss Mohamed Al Fayed, whose son Dodi died alongside Diana in the Paris car crash.
FURIOUS: Mohamed Al Fayed, left, whose son Dodi, right, was also killed
Mr Al Fayed said last night: “The French are very mistaken if they think I am leaving this alone. There’s is a blatant attempt to delay the report to Strasbourg
“I will use the full force of European law to compel them to expose the role of MI6 in the murder of my son and Princess Diana.
“Once again everything I have said has come true. There was a cover-up at the time and these people have been trying to suppress the truth ever since.”
Investigators are certain that representatives of the Secret Intelligence Service, better known as MI6, were operating in Paris on the night of August 31, 1997, when Diana was killed.
They are also sure that France’s DGSE – their equivalent of MI6 – was out in force.
Chauffeur Henri Paul was known to be working for both intelligence services and is believed to have met one of his minders hours before the fateful crash.
There was around £2,000 worth of French francs in Paul’s jacket pocket on the night he died.
Investigators are trying to trace the source of the unexplained cash, which points to spymasters who may have been planning Diana’s death. Both agencies have been called upon to solve riddles, including why it took so long for Diana to reach hospital.
They have also been asked to explain why pathologists broke French law by allowing Diana’s body to be embalmed – so making pregnancy tests invalid – and why blood tests on her so-called “drunk driver” Henri Paul have never been verified independently.
Strasbourg had originally demanded that the French government answer a number of questions by February of this year.
The deadline was then put back to this Thursday. But even this deadline has now proved impossible to meet.
Strasbourg hoped to allow outside agencies, and especially the families of those who died alongside the Princess, to demand answers about what really happened before, during and after the fatal car crash. Such was the seriousness with which the court viewed the case that it fast-tracked it through what is normally an incredibly protracted process.
The official French inquiry concluded in 1999 that driver Paul was drunk and speeding in a car he did not normally drive when he lost control entering the Alma tunnel.
But readings of carbon monoxide and alcohol in his body meant it would have been impossible for him to stand, let alone drive.
Mr Al Fayed has always claimed that his son and Diana were murdered.
Speculation was fuelled by a letter in which Diana said she feared she would die in a car crash and the brakes would be tampered with.
Last year Mr Al Fayed petitioned the European Court under human rights legislation which guarantees everybody the right to life. Mr Al Fayed’s lawyers successfully Monday April 3 2006 argued that the deaths were mysterious and that relatives of the deceased had a legal right to a proper investigation.
The ruling calls on the French to answer all questions as “a matter of urgency”.
Scores of questions were presented, including which security agencies were operating in Paris on the night of Diana’s death and whether her car been tampered with.
And why did it take so long for the French emergency services to get her to a hospital where she could have received life-saving attention?
The court also asked why potentially crucial CCTV film of the crash site has never been made available, and what information the authorities received from Henri Paul.
It also asked who was behind media leaks accusing Paul of being drunk and who exactly gave permission for Diana’s body to be embalmed.
The new evidence will be made available to British detectives currently taking part in the £4million inquiry into the death of Diana. Codenamed Operation Paget, it is being led by former Scotland Yard Commissioner Lord Stevens.
Detectives have always complained that co-operation from Paris has never been as good as they might expect.
The British police report into Diana’s death is expected to be completed by next year and the inquest will take place shortly afterwards.
The latest twist follows a series of allegations about a dirty tricks campaign by British spies.
Lord Stevens and his 12-strong squad have investigated the activities of the two MI6 officers in Paris on the night of the tragedy.
One of them was interviewed over allegations that he and a colleague were ordered to block investigations into MI6 surveillance of Diana.
Diana, Princess of Wales is and always will be The People's Princess.