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'It was a bombshell': The NZ-born editor of The Sun who kicked off the Megxit scandal

Newshub logoNewshub 21/01/2020 Lloyd Burr, Ruwani Perera

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This is the Kiwi journalist who got the scoop that kicked off the entire Megxit scandal, his "bombshell" story sparking two weeks of reports, controversy and crisis.

Dan Wootton, the executive editor of the UK tabloid newspaper The Sun, wrote the article from his parents' living room in Wellington while he was home over the Christmas break. 

The story of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle wanting to step back from the royal family and relocate to Canada was so extraordinary, many didn't believe it at first.

Prince Harry, Dan Wootton are posing for a picture: Watch: Europe correspondent Lloyd Burr's Tuesday report on Dan Wootton's "bombshell" Megxit scoop. © Newshub / Getty Watch: Europe correspondent Lloyd Burr's Tuesday report on Dan Wootton's "bombshell" Megxit scoop. "Few people followed it up in the media, even though I've been breaking more stories than anyone on Megan and Harry and the royal family over the past two years. I think it was considered so controversial and such a bombshell," Wootton, who grew up in Lower Hutt, told Newshub.

When the Sussexes' announcement officially confirmed Wootton's story, the explosion sent shockwaves around the world. The fallout included crisis talks with the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William at Sandringham House, as well as the wrath of millions of disappointed fans around the world.

Wootton says he worked on the scoop for a while, closely observing mounting royal tensions.

"There has been a civil war going on for the past two years, all these different palaces have been working against each other, not for each other - it's quite extraordinary. But what this story did was explode it into the open."

Tabloid coverage by publications like The Sun has contributed to Harry and Meghan's decision to quit the royal spotlight - but Wootton says their new arrangement will likely make it worse.

"We've seen more paparazzi pictures of her over the past week than we have in months," Wootton noted. "Believe me, having worked a lot in Hollywood, different rules apply over there."

The editor admits that Meghan and Harry are "certainly not fans" of his work. 

Meanwhile, Prince Harry made what could be his last official engagement as the Duke of Sussex, joining UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson for a private one-on-one meeting before reportedly rejoining his wife and child in Canada.

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