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Of all the things Princess Diana lost in the demise of her marriage to Prince Charles, the most painful, by far, may have been her emotional stability. After the separation, Diana felt an encroaching sense she was being spied upon and had her rooms at Kensington Palace swept for bugs. And she may well have been right, according to an electronics expert who detected an electronic eavesdropping signal in Diana’s bedroom in 1994. The year before, she’d dispensed with police protection because she feared detectives had been hired to spy on her. By 1996, Diana had come to feel her life was in danger. In fact, she was certain there was a murderous plot afoot. And she was also certain of how it would play out.
“XXXX is planning ‘an accident’ in my car, brake failure and serious head injury in order to make the path clear for Charles to marry,” she wrote in a letter to her former butler, Paul Burrell, a mere 10 months before her death in a Paris car crash on August 31, 1997. The “XXXX” was redacted before text of the letter was released by The Daily Mirror, CNN reported during the investigation of the car crash that killed Princess Diana, along with her boyfriend, Dodi al Fayed, and the driver of the car, Henri Paul.
Burrell kept the note secret until 2003 when he revealed the existence of the note in his book, A Royal Duty, in which he claimed the princess had handed it to him as an insurance policy, The Independent reports. “He wrote that she told him she was going to date it and he should keep it, ‘just in case’.” The note also reveals Diana’s belief that Charles did not intend to marry Camilla, but the former nanny of Princes William and Harry, Tiggy Legge-Bourke. Here are more secrets about Princess Diana no one knew until after her death.
In the aftermath, Fayed’s father, Mohamed al Fayed, also believed the crash was part of a conspiracy. However, he believed its goal was ending the relationship between Diana and Dodi, rather than freeing up Prince Charles to marry someone else.
In 2008, the official investigation into the crash ruled it an accident caused by the gross negligence of the driver and the paparazzi chasing down the car. Some close to Diana, including her close friend, Lucia Flecha da Lima, are satisfied with that determination, having never believed Diana was the target of a plot or even that Diana even believed she was the target of a plot. “Paul Burrell was perfectly capable of imitating Princess Diana’s handwriting,” da Lima has said.
Sadly, we’ll never know for sure. Of course, it’s not uncommon for the death of a beloved public figure to generate rumors of murder conspiracies. These are the 11 questions about Grace Kelly’s death that still remain unanswered.