Inquiry concludes BBC tricked Diana into famous interview

In 1995, Princess Diana gave a legendary interview to the BBC's Martin Bashir in which she detailed the unpleasantness of the Royal Family and its eldest son, her then-husband Charles: "There were three of us in this marriage."

But in the negotiations before the chat took place, the BBC used fake bank statements to manipulate Diana and her brother into believing there was a palace plot against her, inducing her to agree to the interview as pre-emption. The BBC has been lying about it since, according to an internal-but-independent report that singles out Bashir and 90s'-era management for excoriation.

"The use of deceit in making factual programs would have been permissible only in the case of investigating serious crime… and where prima facie evidence of the guilt of that person being investigated had already been obtained," Richard Ayre, the BBC's controller of editorial policy in 1995, told The Daily Telegraph Thursday. "Those circumstances clearly don't apply to an interview with the Princess of Wales. It would not have been acceptable to use significant deceit in this case."

Bashir quit his post as BBC religion editor ahead of the network's release of the inquiry report. The BBC's deputy director of news, Jonathan Munro, announced the news to staff in a May 15 email, according to The Guardian.

Seems very British to have made sure the report was cranked out in time for Bashir to read it.