Omid Scobie’s Yahoo UK column this week is all about Prince Harry’s security fight in the UK. Harry is currently suing the Home Office and the Metropolitan Police because he wants police security when he visits the UK, and he wants to be able to reimburse the police for the cost of that security. Harry is likely spending a small fortune on lawyers for this fight too, just to ensure that he and his family are safe if and when they visit. By comparison, Prince Andrew has been forced out of his royal position multiple times, and he had to settle out of court with Virginia Giuffre after she sued him for rape, and Andrew still has full royal protection, all on the taxpayer’s dime. RAVEC, the secretive committee which determines who gets royal protection, recently decided that Andrew’s royal protection will stay in place for the forseeable future. Once again, at taxpayer expense.
The Duke of York still receives taxpayer-funded police protection, despite no longer undertaking official duties, The Telegraph has learnt. Prince Andrew’s entitlement to police bodyguards was subjected to a full review after he was exiled as a working royal by the Queen earlier this year, shortly before agreeing a hefty financial settlement with his sex abuse accuser.
The Executive Committee for the Protection of Royalty and Public Figures (known as Ravec) assessed the security threat but concluded that he was still entitled to police bodyguards.
The decision is likely to prove contentious because of the High Court legal claim brought by the Duke of Sussex against the committee’s decision to deny him and his family automatic security when he is in the UK.
The extent of Prince Andrew’s day-to-day activities since being stripped of royal duties is unknown beyond horse riding and regular visits to the Queen. But he will continue to be entitled to a personal protection officer whenever he leaves his home. His property on the Windsor estate has permanent security arrangements.
The annual cost of his personal security is unknown but has been variously estimated at anything between £500,000 and £3 million.
Prince Andrew is only ninth in line to the throne and shares in common with his nephew a lack of official royal role. However, as one of the Queen’s four children and a permanent UK resident, his circumstances are markedly different. The recent high profile civil case in which Virginia Giuffre accused the Duke of raping and abusing her three times in 2001, when she was 17, may have been considered to heighten his security risk.
Wait, Andrew needs to keep his security because he had to settle out of court with his rape victim/rape accuser and because he was close friends with a known pedophile and human trafficker for decades? Like, those are factors in the security threats against him and Ravec was like “you guys, people are really mad at this degenerate pervert, he needs police protection!” Meanwhile, every violent white supremacist in the UK, Europe and America has the Duke and Duchess of Sussex in their crosshairs and Ravec is like ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.
Also: the fact that Andrew lives practically rent-free in the giant Royal Lodge mansion within the Windsor Castle compound and that is why he “needs security” is not the argument they think it is.
Photos courtesy of Backgrid.