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DIANA FINDS PAY PHONES PERPLEXING

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Princess Diana denies making more than 300 crank calls to a handsome, married friend. In fact, she denies even knowing how to use a pay phone.

Britain's tabloids were in turmoil Monday over news reports the silent calls to a friend of Diana and her estranged husband, Prince Charles, came from her private phone at Kensington Palace, nearby pay phones and her mobile phone."I don't even know how to use a parking meter, let alone a phone box," the princess was quoted as telling the Daily Mail. Its reporter was summoned to hear her side after the Sunday tabloid News of the World accused her of making the calls.

Art dealer Oliver Hoare, 48, who complained to police about the calls, has been unavailable for comment.

The Times of London said Monday that the calls started in September 1992, three months before Charles and Diana announced their separation after 11 years of marriage.

The Daily Mail said Hoare acted as a go-between for the couple on matters such as sharing custody of their sons.

Scotland Yard refused to comment on the story. Buckingham Palace also declined comment.

"They are trying to make out I was having an affair with this man or had some sort of fatal attraction. It is simply untrue and so unfair," the Daily Mail quoted the princess as saying. "What have I done to deserve this? I feel I am being destroyed. There is absolutely no truth in it."