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Last Updated: Wednesday, 5 December 2007, 20:49 GMT
Dodi bought Diana jewelled ring
The shrine to Dodi and Diana in Harrods
Dodi Fayed bought the princess a so-called "Tell me yes ring"
Dodi Al Fayed picked out a diamond encrusted ring for Diana, Princess of Wales, hours before she died, the inquest into her death has heard.

Claude Roulet, the assistant to the Ritz hotel president, said the ring was a "tell me yes" ring.

The receipt describes the ring as an "engagement ring" - but Mr Roulet said Mr Al Fayed had not spoken about an engagement when he was choosing it.

A receipt shown to the jury showed that the ring cost 115,000 francs (11,500).

Mr Roulet explained to the jury that he took a selection to a suite at the Ritz on the night of 30 August 1997 and that Mr Al Fayed spoke in a whisper so that the princess could not hear.

He chose the "Dis-moi Oui" or "Tell me Yes" jewel-encrusted ring from a selection of jewellery that included watches and bracelets.

Mr Roulet dismissed suggestions that the ring was one chosen by the princess - she had previously asked Mr Al Fayed for a "simple ring of gold", when the couple had been on a trip to Monte Carlo.

Security service

The inquest jury also heard how Henri Paul - who drove the car in which he, Diana and Mr Al Fayed died - had been in contact with France's security service.

Mr Roulet said Mr Paul put him in touch with the security service, the DST, when a prominent diplomat was coming to stay at the hotel.

The princess, Mr Paul and Mr Al Fayed died in the crash on 31 August 1997.

Mr Roulet said the hotel was often asked about the movements of high-profile guests by the police, which he said was information it felt it "had to" provide.

Mr Roulet told the inquest: "The French police knew about the arrival of some guests and when they needed to have a look at what they did they asked the security services at the Ritz to have some tips about what they did and when they came in and went out and who they met and so on."

Bended knee

On one occasion, he said: "I was advised of the presence of a Russian diplomat and I called Mr Paul to say that this person would be here.

"Henri Paul said 'I will call someone and he will be able to speak to this person' - and I was contacted by someone from the DST and he wanted to speak to me to know the details of this person."

Also during Wednesday's session of the London inquest, Mr Al Fayed's former butler said he saw his boss down on one knee touching Diana's stomach in his Paris apartment hours before the crash.

"What that meant I have no idea," butler Rene Delorm said, adding that it was only later he heard rumours of a pregnancy.

Speaking by video-link from his home in Los Angeles, Mr Delorm said Mr Al Fayed had earlier asked him to have champagne ready on the afternoon of August 30.

"He said: 'Rene, have some champagne ready because when I come back I'm going to propose to the princess'.

"The next thing he did, he reached into his pocket, he took out a box and I saw the ring."



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