Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are reportedly asking for copies of video and photographs taken of them during a controversial incident involving paparazzi this month in New York City.
According to the BBC, California-based photo agency, Backgrid refused to share the images or footage with the couple after receiving a demand from the couple’s lawyers to do so.
“In America, as I’m sure you know, the property belongs to the owner of it: Third parties cannot just demand it be given to them, as perhaps Kings can do,” Backgrid representatives snapped at the legal team in a message, noted the BBC.
“Perhaps you should sit down with your client and advise them that his English rules of the royal prerogative to demand that the citizenry hand over their property to the Crown were rejected by this country long ago … We stand by our founding fathers.”
The Messenger reached out to Backgrid for comment.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were leaving the 2023 Women of Vision Awards: Celebrating Generations of Progress & Power in New York on May 16 when paparazzi followed them as they left in their vehicle.
Meghan’s mother, Doria Ragland, was traveling with them at the time.
A representative for the couple previously told The Messenger that the “relentless pursuit” lasted “over two hours” and “resulted in multiple near-collisions involving other drivers on the road, pedestrians, and two NYPD officers.”
The statement called it a “near catastrophic car chase.” City police called it “challenging.” No one was injured or arrested.
A cab driver who drove the couple part of the time said in an interview: “I don’t think I would call it a chase. I never felt like I was in danger.”
They “kept following us and were coming next to the car,” said the cabbie, Sukhcharn Singh. “They took pictures as we stopped.”
The following day, New York City Mayor Eric Adams noted the incident and recalled memories of the tragic death of Harry’s mother, the late Princess Diana. She died in 1997 after paparazzi chased her through the streets of Paris.
“I don’t think there’s many of us who don’t recall how his mom died,” Adams said.
“And it would be horrific to lose an innocent bystander during a chase like this and something to have happened to them as well … I thought that was a bit reckless and irresponsible,” he added
In a previous statement from Backgrid to The Messenger, the agency said it had received photos and video from the event “from four freelance photographers, three of whom were in cars and one of whom was riding a bicycle.”