12th March 2010 Daily Mail
Diana, Princess of Wales died after attempts to frighten her into dumping Dodi Fayed and ending her anti-
establishment activities went horribly wrong, a leading lawyer has claimed.
Michael Mansfield claimed he was sure Diana’s ‘killers’ had no intention of ending her life in a Paris tunnel in August
1997 and simply wanted to scare her.
He claimed the operation to torpedo her relationship with Dodi, and silence her planned criticism of the British
government over foreign arms sales, backfired spectacularly.
Mr Mansfield, who represented Dodi’s father Mohamed al Fayed at the 2007 inquest into Diana’s death, said: ‘I don’t
believe anyone wanted to see her dead.
‘I think there was a plan to sabotage the relationship and alter her life, to try to stop her activities.
‘This plan went very badly and ended with her death.’
The radical QC, whose long list of famous cases has included the Bloody Sunday inquiry and the Jean Charles de
Menezes inquest, has previously claimed Diana’s road crash death was no accident.
He outlined his views in memoirs published last year on his colourful 40-year career.
His latest comments on the tragedy were made during a trip to Barcelona.
A jury concluded Diana had been unlawfully killed in April 2008 after a six-month inquest at the Royal Courts of
Justice. It blamed the grossly negligent driving of her chauffeur Henri Paul and chasing paparazzi photographers.
Mohamed al Fayed, who told the inquest Diana was murdered in a conspiracy involving Tony Blair, MI5,
MI6 and the British ambassador to France, has always refused to accept the verdict.
In an interview with Catalan daily El Periodico published today, Mr Mansfield said British authorities opposed several
aspects of Diana’s private and public life.
He said: ‘I believe the relationship between Princess Diana and Dodi al Fayed displeased the authorities.
‘In spite of all the work Mohamed al Fayed did for children and hospitals, he was persona non grata in Britain.
‘As far as Diana was concerned, she had given interviews attacking the Royal Family for the way they treated her,
but I think what most annoyed the authorities was that Diana became very actively involved in the campaign against
‘The UK arms sales industry is huge, it’s one of the biggest three in the world.
‘The investigation into Diana’s death showed she was preparing to denounce British complicity in the sale of
weapons to countries that do not respect human rights.’
Mr Mansfield travelled to Barcelona as a member of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine, a citizens’ initiative launched
last year in Brussels which aims to reaffirm the primacy of international law as the basis for solving the Israeli-
The tribunal held its first session in Barcelona earlier this month.
Mr Mansfield, who announced last year he was giving up court work after 42 years for a break, has long been a
Critics dubbed him a champagne socialist and Michael ‘Moneybags’ Mansfield because of the money he earned.
Much of his reputed £700,000-a-year earnings at the height of his career came from legally aided causes celebres.
He was paid £1,900 a day representing families at the Bloody Sunday inquiry, which has cost the taxpayer some
The monthly bill for his legal team during the Diana case, which comprised nearly 40 lawyers around the world as
well as inquiry agents, is said to have reached £1.5million.
In memoirs published last year he said: ‘In the case of Diana and Dodi, I have always believed that
whatever had caused the crash, it was not an accident.
‘As it transpired, that belief was shared by the jury at the inquest.’
He added: ‘Diana’s fears for her safety and her preoccupation with surveillance were thoroughly canvassed, and in
my view were found to be entirely justified.
‘Unfortunately her predictions came to pass.’