Meghan Markle's Father Won't Attend Royal Wedding After 'Heart Attack' and Photo Scandal
The news comes as Markle's estranged sister Samantha Grant says she was behind the scandal rocking Great Britain ahead of the royal wedding.
Thomas Markle is reportedly not attending this weekend's royal wedding in the wake of a photo scandal that has rocked the nuptials.
Just five days before the highly anticipated wedding, it has been found that Meghan Markle's father staged images of him getting ready for his daughter's big day that were published around the globe.
The photo scandal is front page news in London, with many reporting that the bride was let down by her father, Thomas Markle.
He will not attend the wedding Saturday at Windsor Castle's St. George’s Chapel, where he was supposed to walk his daughter down the aisle, to not embarrass her further, according to reports.
He also claimed to TMZ he had suffered a heart attack six days ago and checked himself out of the hospital in anticipation of the wedding.
A Kensington Palace official told reporter Roya Nikkah that the situation is a "deeply personal matter" for Markle.
Now the "Suits" actress’ estranged half-sister tells Inside Edition she's to blame for the scandal.
"I’m the culprit — it was me," Samantha Grant told Inside Edition. "It was my idea that he show the world and the British royal family exactly what he is like — doing healthy things, getting in shape, being outdoorsy."
Grant says that paparazzi "were already involved" in the photos and claimed that they are "stalking" her father, as well as "renting the house next to him in Mexico so they can catch him off guard."
She says the paparazzi have been "stressing him out."
The photos are believed to have sold for at least $100,000, but Grant claims she doesn't know if her father was paid for the pictures.
"If he was, it was the pits," she said.
Grant said that since the scandal broke, he has driven back to his home in Mexico.
She added that her father "had a rough time with his heart" and if he doesn't go to the wedding it is because of "health reasons," she claims.
The photographs showed 73-year-old Thomas Markle working out, getting measured for his morning suit, and surfing the internet for information about the wedding.
Surveillance video has surfaced showing him entering an internet cafe with a photographer and willingly posing for that photo as he looked up British culture and info on the wedding.
As for the young fellow supposedly measuring him for his suit, it is not a tailor but a college kid who says Thomas Markle gave him a $15 tip and even provided the measuring tape.
"I just went along with it," he's quoted as saying.
In England, the scandal is seen as a humiliation for Meghan Markle and the royal family, which only three days ago warned photographers not to "harass" Thomas Markle.
"If I am honest, I think we are on Meghan's side," said Amanda Holden, a judge on "Britain's Got Talent" and special royal wedding correspondent for Inside Edition. "The whole nation is with her. I think we feel nothing but embarrassment on her behalf."
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