The spending on the investigation into the death of Princess Diana and her friend Dodi Fayed has reached almost seven million pounds ($14 million). The figures were posted on the official website of the Coroner Lord Justice Scott Baker.
The amount does not include fees for layers representing witnesses from the British police, special services and Dodi’s father, the Egyptian multimillionaire, Mohammed al-Fayed, who claims that Diana was murdered.
Fayed’s affirmations, rejected by detectives investigating Diana’s death, made the court expand the list of witnesses, which subsequently increased costs.
The first results of the ongoing inquest are to be summed up on March 31, when the 11-person inquest jury comes back to court. They have sat through the evidence of more than 240 witnesses, both live and in statement form, since the inquests began in October.
The testimony given at court hearings on the case are often blatantly misinterpreted by the British press. British lawmakers believe that the independent investigation has turned into a show, a waste of time and tax-payers’ money.
The death of Diana has been the subject of widespread conspiracy theories, supported by Mohamed Fayed, whose son died in the accident. Her former father in law, Prince Philip, seems to be at the heart of most of them but her ex-husband has also been named, and was questioned by the Metropolitan Police in 2005. Some other theories have included claims that MI6 or the CIA were involved.
Conspiracy theorists have also claimed that Paul's blood samples were swapped with blood from someone else - who was drunk - and contended that the driver had not been drinking on the night Diana died.
Another particular claim, appearing on the internet, has stated that the princess was battered to death in the back of the ambulance, by assassins disguised as paramedics. Nonetheless, in 2004 the authorities ordered an independent inquiry by Lord Stevens, former Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, and he suggested that the case was far more complex than any of us thought and reported new forensic evidence and witnesses. The French authorities have also decided to reopen the case. Lord Stevens' report, Operation Paget, was published on December 14, 2006 and dismissed all allegations of conspiracy as without foundation.
An inquest into her death began on October 2, 2007.
Prepared by Dmitry Sudakov