Prince Harry Loses Legal Battle Hinging on His Royal Status
Prince Harry just lost a legal battle that is unique to non-working royals like himself. The Duke of Sussex was trying to create an arrangement where he could personally pay for police protection while he is in the U.K. According to a report by Deadline, that request has been denied.
Prince Harry stepped back from his duties as a "working royal" back in 2020, and he lost some of the perks and assurances of the office at the same time. The royal family has 24/7 security paid for by taxpayers, but Prince Harry is no longer among them and he does not qualify. He hoped that he could arrange to pay for that service himself so that he and his family would still be safe while visiting his childhood home, but he was denied by the Executive Committee for the Protection of Royalty and Public Figures – often called "Ravec." According to the BBC, it decision also came from Home Office lawyers, who fear that after a while, any wealthy person would be able to "buy" police protection.
Harry's legal team even requested a judicial review to challenge the decision, but a judge just turned down their appeal for a new hearing. His lawyers argued that Ravec has "exceeded its authority," and that if the king's son paid for "special police services" it would not be "inconsistent with the public interest or public confidence in the Metropolitan Police Service."
The legal team reportedly succeeded in taking this issue one notch higher, requesting legal reviews for the decision making in this process. Those complaints have not been formally heard yet, and there's no telling when the process will move forward. Meanwhile, Harry still has an ongoing case against Mirror Group Newspapers, arguing that they used unlawful means of obtaining information about his private life. That case is still in court. Mirror Group denies all wrongdoing.
The news hits all the harder coming on the heels of Harry and Meghan Markle's reported car chase through Manhattan. Their spokesperson called the ordeal "near catastrophic," and obviously it evoked strong memories of how Harry's mother died in 1997. In this case, the chase was once again reportedly spurred by paparazzi. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were unharmed in the fiasco.