Diana death plot royal named
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Diana 'death plot' royal named
The senior member of the Royal family who Princess Diana believed was plotting to kill her in a car crash has been named.
Diana's allegation was made in a letter written 10 months before she died in a Paris car crash in 1997, and was included in a book by her former butler Paul Burrell last year.
Penguin, the book's publishers, and the Daily Mirror, which serialised A Royal Duty, blanked out the name at the time. The relevant passage read: "** ******* is planning 'an accident' in my car, brake failure and serious head injury..."
But the Daily Mirror has revealed what it claims is the identity of the person named by Diana in the letter. The newspaper said Mr Burrell is prepared to hand over the letter to Royal coroner Michael Burgess, who is opening inquests into the deaths of Diana and Dodi Fayed.
The newspaper said it had "decided to publish the blanked out name because it will inevitably appear in the public domain".
The inquests are the first official public hearings in Britain into the deaths of the couple in the Pont d'Alma underpass in Paris. They are being formally opened at separate venues today before being adjourned. The full hearings are not expected to take place for several months.
It is hoped the inquests could eventually shed light on the flurry of conspiracy theories surrounding the events of August 31, 1997. Speculation that the couple were murdered by MI6 has circulated for years with Dodi's father, Mohammed al Fayed, insisting they were assassinated by the British secret service.
The Harrods owner was due to attend both of today's hearings with his legal team, including barrister Michael Mansfield QC. Other conspiracy rumours centre on claims the princess was pregnant when she died, with a senior French police source recently speaking out in support of the theory.
Diana, 36, and 42-year-old Dodi were killed along with chauffeur Henri Paul when their Mercedes crashed in a tunnel on August 31, 1997. They were being pursued by photographers as they took the short trip from the Ritz Hotel to Mr Fayed's Paris apartment.
A two-year French investigation led by Judge Herve Stephan blamed Paul for losing control of the car while high on drink and drugs and driving too fast. Trevor Rees Jones, the princess's personal bodyguard, was the only survivor and can recall little of the crash.
Story filed: 08:03 Tuesday 6th January 2004