Prince Harry’s lengthy legal battle over the Home Office’s decision to terminate police protection in the UK has so far cost taxpayers more than £235,600.
The bill has more than doubled in size in six months amid ongoing challenges to the Duke of Sussex’s government’s cutback in security measures.
The Duke and his wife Meghan Markle have stepped back from royal duties as they move to Montecito, California in early 2020.
Following the move, dubbed “Megxit,” the Home Office ruled that the Duke would not be given “the same degree” of personal protection, even though he had offered to pay for it himself. He said his offer was “unrelated” to the official’s decision over royal security.
Britain’s former counter-terrorism chief said this week that Meghan had faced credible threats to her life while living in the UK, shedding new light on the prince’s challenges.
In stepping down as Deputy Director of Metropolitan Aviation, Neil Bass said the conspiracy was “very real” and was being investigated by a Scotland Yard team.
The prince has previously said through his legal team that he “inherited security threats at birth” and that his young family faced “well-documented neo-Nazi and extremist threats”. was
According to information released after a Freedom of Information Act request by Metro.co.uk, the total cost of the Home Office to 10 November is £235,604.39.
The amount has more than doubled since the £90,000 total was disclosed in July 2022.
The majority of the bill is made up of government legal department fees, which amounted to £154,004.64, followed by attorneys’ payments of £80,599.20, the dataset shows.
The bill is further divided into £660 court costs, £16.55 courier charges and £324 e-discovery costs.
The 38-year-old crown prince says his private security team lacks proper jurisdiction abroad, including access to local information and operating under the law enforcement framework.
He filed a complaint to the High Court in September 2021 for the Home Office’s refusal and underwent a judicial review that included examining the legitimacy of the public authority’s decision.
According to the published ruling, the appeal was granted on several grounds, but not on all grounds sought by the prince’s legal team.
The application should have been informed of the security policy before the refusal was issued and should have had the opportunity to present its case to the decision-making body, the Royal and VIP Executive Committee (Ravec). You have been allowed to proceed.
Prince Harry’s legal representatives said they “would like to challenge the decision-making behind the security procedures in the hope that they will be re-evaluated for the obvious and necessary protections needed.”
The application follows a security incident in July 2021 when the Duke’s car was chased by a photographer as he left a charity event at Kew Gardens.
“His safety was compromised without police protection,” his lawyers said.
Decisions regarding the protection of the royal family and major celebrities are made by Ravec, which is administered by the Ministry of Interior. Its members include departments, the Metropolitan Police Department, and the Royal Family, which work together to advise an independent chairman in decision-making.
The bill does not reflect the time spent by Home Office officials.The ministry said in its response that the amount “cannot be quantified.”
The Duke and Duchess are said to have privately funded security arrangements in the United States.
Basu said Meghan, 41, was the target of “disgusting and very real” death threats while living in the UK.
When asked by Channel 4 News if her life was in danger, he replied: I had the team investigate. People are being prosecuted for these threats.
In an interview broadcast Wednesday, the former head of royal protection said the Duchess had been targeted by the extreme far-right and that anyone exposed to “rhetoric” posted online was “under constant threat.” You will feel that you are,” he said.
In January, the Duke’s legal team said, “While the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have personally funded a private security team for their families, that security is subject to the need for police assistance while in the UK.” Protection cannot be duplicated.
“Without such protection, Prince Harry and his family will not be able to return home. I was the first to offer to pay for it.
“The offer has been turned down.
“As is widely known, other people who have left public office and are at risk of potential threats are entitled to free police protection.
“Prince Harry’s goal is simple: to keep himself and his family safe while in the UK, and to help his children get to know their country.”
Metro.co.uk has reached out to the Duke and Duchess’ representatives for further comment.
A government spokesperson said: “The UK government’s protective security system is rigorous and balanced.
“It has been our long-standing policy not to provide detailed information about these arrangements.
“It is not appropriate to comment on the ongoing legal proceedings.”
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