BUCKINGHAM PALACE are bringing in a team of independent investigators to a launch the probe into claims Meghan Markle bullied royal staff, it has been reported.
Palace officials have opted to employ a third-party law firm to conduct the investigation into the allegations from former and current aides, according to royal insiders.Meghan has continued to maintain her innocence after the emergence of the allegationsCredit: Getty Images - Getty The Palace is reportedly bringing in a third-party law firm to investigate the bullying claimsCredit: Getty - Contributor
The inquiry will no doubt ramp up tensions between the Sussexes and the Royal Family - as one source warned "the actual worst incidences haven't come out", the Times reports.
The dramatic U-turn from the originally announced in-house inquiry comes after Meghan and Harry's explosive interview with Oprah Winfrey.
The couple has found themselves at the centre of a historic race row with the British monarchy, after Meghan claimed members of the Royals had concerns about "how dark" her son Archie's skin might be, when she was pregnant.
However, it has emerged that Prince Harry and William have finally "been in contact" amid the Oprah fall out after it was reported they had not spoken for months.
During the bombshell interview with Winfrey, Harry also claimed that his family had "cut him off" financially after he and Meghan left the Firm.
But pals of the Prince of Wales have slammed the Duke's account and accused him of "hypocrisy".
One fiery friend of Charles told the Time: "What f*****g hypocrisy. When Harry and Meghan left last year, they wanted to become ‘financially independent".
Another reportedly added: "It was a surprise to hear he’d been cut off, given the bank statements.
What f*****g hypocrisy. When Harry and Meghan left last year, they wanted to become ‘financially independent
Pal of Prince Charles
"The prince continued to provide Harry and Meghan with financial support after their move to America, while they found their feet."
Several current and former royal aides are set to submit evidence for the inquiry, after they were unable to provide testimony in court during Meghan's recent legal battle against the Mail on Sunday.
Jason Knauf, the Sussexes then Communications Secretary, kicked off the bullying saga in October 2018 after he sent an email to a senior courtier.
He expressed his concern that "the Duchess was able to bully two PAs out of the household in the past year."The Palace are said to want to keep the review out of the public eyeCredit: Getty - Contributor Royal sources have slammed the Sussexes for the claims they made in their interview with OprahCredit: AFP or licensors
Despite Knauf's claim that "The duchess seems intent on always having someone in her sights," the complaint was not pursued by the HR department.
Two senior members of staff came forward in February this year, alleging that they had been bullied by Meghan.
One former employee claimed they were personally "humiliated" by the 39-year-old ex-Suits star, and that two other employees were bullied by her.
Meghan has denied the defamatory claims, with the Sussexes spokesperson branding it: "a calculated smear campaign based on misleading and harmful misinformation."
But one Royal insider suggested, "The actual worst incidences haven’t
come out. There are some harrowing stories to tell."
Another warned some scandals, "could come out in the wash that hasn't been told."
Meghan and Harry are not expected to be invited to participate in the Palace inquiry - despite having written to "The Firm" specifically regarding the matter.
The actual worst incidences haven’t
come out. There are some harrowing stories to tell.
However, it is reported that the Palace is keen for the examination to "not be played out in public" to guarantee those involved can "feel comfortable".
A Palace spokesman said: "Our commitment to look into the circumstances around the allegations from former staff of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex is being taken forward but we will not be providing a public commentary on it."
The bullying probe has been launched with the intention to "learn lessons" by conducting a thorough investigation involving a broad-spectrum of Palace staff.
Royal sources also slammed the couple's claims that the Palace offered her no assistance when she felt suicidal.
They told the Times, "To throw that at the family, I just couldn't believe it. His mental health, and hers, were such an open part of the office.
"Given the number of staff that worked with them, it was a very open part of the conversations generally."
The redirection of the review was welcomed by one insider, who said: "It’s a
reassuring sign about the Palace’s attitude to it, they’ve got a lot of work to do."