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According to multiple news sources, Thomas Markle, father of bride-of-the-decade Meghan Markle, is no longer expected to attend the royal wedding. While Markle claims that he suffered a heart attack six days ago–checking himself out of the hospital in order to attend the wedding–the sudden shift in plans comes swiftly on the heels of yet another scandal.

Earlier this week news came out that Markle had perhaps — probably even — colluded with paparazzi to sell photos. See, those adorable pics of Thomas reading about England, getting measured for his wedding suit and looking at a pic of his daughter and Prince Harry at a very public Internet café were all staged.

According to the Daily Mail, Markle collaborated with photographer Jeff Rayner on the faked photos of himself preparing for the royal wedding and both men reportedly made a pretty penny off the supposedly candid shots.

The Mail not only accessed the CCTV footage of Markle and Rayner plotting the scenes of the not-so-subtle photoshoots beforehand, but also spoke with witnesses who saw them together.

“They didn’t stay long, probably about 10 minutes,” the Internet cafe’s manager, Jessica Anaya, told the Mail. “And they left together.”

It got weirder when the men showed up at the tailor shop because the store was closed. Instead, they went to a neighbouring shop and asked the teenage worker there to pretend he was measuring Meghan’s dad.

“I just went along with it,” said party store worker David Flores, who is seen in the now-infamous photos. “I was telling him the measurements, but he didn’t write them down or anything. It was really strange.”

Those photos, not to mention the one a few weeks back of Markle reading a book about England, fetched Rayner a reported £100,000 ($175,000). No word on what Thomas’ cut was.

All this comes after the Royal Family asked paparazzi to leave Markle alone as he is a very private man. Ugh. We really wanted to give Thomas the benefit of the doubt, but the shots were so obviously staged it’s difficult believe that someone was that naive. But, it’s not outside the realm of possibility. As the Mail was quick to point out, it may not have come down to Markle being greedy at all, but merely a dad trying to show himself in the best light.

Poor Meghan. No matter how you slice it, this has to be hard news to take. Here’s hoping that it all works out for everyone.

 

Don’t miss a moment of the festivities; tune in to CTV News’ live special Harry and Meghan: The Royal Wedding Saturday, May 19, starting at 4 a.m. ET on CTV and CTV.ca.

And get up to speed on everything royal wedding related with The Social’s Royal Wedding Show, airing this Friday at 1 p.m. ET.