Since 1997 it has been claimed that there was an orchestrated criminal conspiracy to end the life of Diana, Princess of Wales. Official investigations found that she died in a manner consistent with media reports following the fatal car crash in a Paris road tunnel on 31 August 1997. A French investigation, which reported in early September 1999, concluded that the Princess of Wales died as the result of an accident. The French investigator, Judge Hervé Stephan, concluded that the paparazzi were some distance from the Mercedes when it crashed and were not responsible. After hearing evidence in the 2007-8 British inquest, a jury found in favour of an “unlawful killing” by driver Henri Pauland the paparazzi pursuing the car.
Prominent in disputing the two official version of events have been the British Daily Express newspaper and Mohamed Al-Fayed, whose son Dodi Fayed was Diana’s boyfriend at the time and died with her. A special Metropolitan Police inquiry team was established in 2004, Operation Paget, headed by then Commissioner John Stevens to investigate the conspiracy theories which led to the inquest. This investigation looked into 175 “conspiracy claims” that had been made by Al-Fayed. Al-Fayed has persistently suggested what were found to be conspiracy theories at the inquest and has repeatedly claimed that his son and the Princess of Wales were murdered.