Princess Diana's bombshell 1995 interview only happened because interviewer Martin Bashir used "deceitful behavior" to secure the sit-down, according to a new report.
The 127-page report concluded that Bashir "deceived and induced" Diana's brother Earl Spencer by presenting false evidence that propelled him to convince his sister to accept the BBC interview.
Bashir reportedly presented Spencer with fake bank statements, alleging they were proof that someone on his staff was leaking stories about Diana to the press.
The Telegraph reports that BBC’s current director-general Tim Davie accepts the findings of former High Court Judge Lord Dyson and even apologized for Bashir's questionable behavior all those years ago.
"Although the report states that Diana, Princess of Wales, was keen on the idea of an interview with the BBC, it is clear that the proceeds for securing the interview fell far short of what audiences have a right to expect," said Davie.
"We are very sorry for this. Lord Dyson has identified clear failings."
Davie continued to say that BBC has learned from their mistake.
"While today’s BBC has significantly better processes and procedures, those that existed at the time should have prevented the interview being secured this way," he continued.
"The BBC should have made greater effort to get to the bottom of what happened at the time and been more transparent about what it knew. While the BBC cannot turn back the clock after a quarter of a century, we can make a full and unconditional apology. The BBC offers that today."
Bashir released his own statement after Lord Dyson's report, apologizing for his actions but standing by his powerful interview with Diana.
"This is the second time that I have willingly fully co-operated with an investigation into events more than 25 years ago," he stated. "I apologized then, and I do so again now, over the fact that I asked for bank statements to be mocked up. It was a stupid thing to do and was an action I deeply regret. But I absolutely stand by the evidence I gave a quarter of a century ago, and again more recently."
Denying the false bank statements had any bearing on Diana's decision, he continued, "Evidence handed to the inquiry in her own handwriting (and published alongside the report today) unequivocally confirms this, and other compelling evidence presented to Lord Dyson reinforces it. In fact, despite his other findings, Lord Dyson himself in any event accepts that the princess would probably have agreed to be interviewed without what he describes as my 'intervention.’"
Bashir ended his statement by suggesting the findings of his behavior shouldn't overshadow the late princess's message.
"It is saddening that this single issue has been allowed to overshadow the princess' brave decision to tell her story, to courageously talk through the difficulties she faced, and, to help address the silence and stigma that surrounded mental health issues all those years ago. She led the way in addressing so many of these issues and that's why I will always remain immensely proud of that interview," he said.
Despite Bashir's denial that the bank statements were crucial to locking down their interview, Diana's brother claimed that's not true.
"This was what led me to talk to Diana about such things," he told PEOPLE. "This, in turn, led to the meeting where I introduced Diana to Bashir, on September 19, 1995. This then led to the interview."