Meghan Markle's father 'deeply embarrassed' after staged paparazzi ploy revealed: Report


Meghan Markle's father, Thomas Markle, is reportedly "deeply embarrassed" after being caught allegedly staging paparazzi shots ahead of his daughter's wedding to Prince Harry.

The Daily Mail first reported that photos of Thomas being fitted for a suit, reading up about the royal wedding at an internet cafe and reading a magazine about British landmarks that were released over the weekend were actually part of a deal that he struck with Los Angeles-based celebrity photographer Jeff Rayner.

SEE ALSO: Meghan Markle and estranged father 'in a good place' ahead of royal wedding

The outlet reported that Rayner was paid nearly $135,000 for the photos of the 73-year-old former Hollywood lighting director, which were sold around the world. CCTV footage obtained by the Daily Mail shows the two arriving at an internet cafe in London together and knowingly setting up the shots. When the suiting shop that they had planned to shoot in was closed, the pair enlisted the help of a nearby teenage party-store employee, who they asked to pose as a tailor.

"I just went along with it," the worker told the Daily Mail. "I was telling him the measurements, but he didn't write them down or anything. It was really strange."

See photos of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry together:

Making matters even more confusing was the fact that the royal family had issued a statement asking paparazzi to leave Thomas Markle alone in the days leading up to his daughter's wedding on May 19.

The former "Suits" actress' stepbrother, Thomas Markle Jr., said that "his father will apologize to both Miss Markle and Prince Harry privately for the pictures," while also defending his father amid the intense media scrutiny that he's been under in the weeks leading up to the royal wedding.

Despite the controversy, sources close to the Markle's insist that Thomas Markle will still walk his daughter down the aisle at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle on Saturday as planned.

"Meghan loves her dad," an insider told People last week of the father-daughter pair. "Like any father-daughter relationship, there have been ups and downs over the years. But they are in a good place now."

The insider also disputed Thomas Jr.'s allegations that Markle abandoned her father emotionally and financially when she entered Hollywood years ago.

"She's been supportive of him in every day, including financially," the source said. "She has paid many of her father's bills over the years."

See photos of Meghan Markle with her mother, Doria Ragland:

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