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Yard refuses to comment over 'doubts'.

SCOTLAND YARD today refused to comment on a report that senior British police officers have doubts over the authenticity of chauffeur Henri Paul's blood sample, used in a French inquiry which concluded that Diana, Princess of Wales was killed by a drunk driver.

The Times newspaper said it has learned there are what it called "high- level concerns" over the specimen and that French police have not carried out a DNA test which would prove it came from Mr Paul.

Doubts over the validity of the blood sample would threaten the credibility of the French inquiry, which concluded Mr Paul, high on a cocktail of drink and drugs, lost control of the Mercedes car while speeding in the Pont D'Alma tunnel.

Diana, her boyfriend Dodi Fayed, and Mr Paul died in the crash on August 31, 1997.

Mr Paul's family and Dodi's father, Mohamed al Fayed, have repeatedly drawn attention to the level of carbon monoxide in Mr Paul's sample, which was said to be so high that he would have struggled to walk let alone drive a car.

Police Inspector Jean-Claude Mules, who played a central role in the French investigation, told The Times: "There was no error over the blood. We are very serious people and no errors are allowed."

Inquests into the deaths of Diana and Dodi were opened and adjourned earlier this week by royal coroner Michael Burgess.

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REPORT: Diana, Princess of Wales
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Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Jan 10, 2004
Words:239
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