Diana's Butler Denies Stealing from Her
Burrell, 44, who served Diana until her death in 1977, stands accused of stealing a long list of royal possessions, ranging from family photos to small gifts, to samples from her legendary wardrobe -- all told, more than 300 items.
These were possessions that "someone should not keep and should not have," prosecuting barrister William Boyce QC told London's Old Bailey. Boyce said the items belonged not only to Diana, but also to her former husband, Prince Charles, and to their sons.
"I ask you to consider the potential value of even one CD autographed by Diana, Princess of Wales," Boyce said, adding that police found in Burrell's possession "CD after CD after CD, all signed 'Diana.'"
Boyce accused Burrell of helping himself to two signed family albums with a large number of photographs of intimate family gatherings. "These are family snaps clearly never for public consumption," said the lawyer.
At an earlier hearing in August, Burrell denied three charges of theft from Diana, Charles and Prince William. His lawyer, Andrew Shaw, has stated that many of the items of clothing in question belonged to Burrell's wife. Shaw also accused police of staging what he called "a trophy trial."
Whatever it is, the high-profile proceeding is expected to last for five weeks. Diana's mother and at least one of her sisters are scheduled to appear, though it is considered unlikely that either Prince Charles or Prince William will. They are slated to be represented by a former aide.
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