Prince Harry ‘lost’ his High Court challenge over why his royal protection was pulled

Prince Harry “lost” in court today, in his years-long attempt to get some accountability for how his royal security was removed in 2020. In the four years since the Sussexes’ royal protection was withdrawn, we have gotten a fuller picture on how and why it happened. Basically, the fix was in as soon as Harry refused to stop pursuing all of the leaks from Kensington Palace, plus Harry started suing all of the British newspapers. There was a lot of drama with QEII’s private secretary Edward Young, who was also on the RAVEC committee which oversees who gets royal protection. Young and Charles’s office made sure that the Sussexes’ security was yanked suddenly in 2020, and Harry has spent years trying to get everything on the record about how and why that happened. Plus, Harry wants royal security when he visits the UK, which Ravec and the Met Police have rejected (even though Harry wants to pay back the costs). In any case, Harry lost:

Prince Harry has lost a High Court challenge against the government over the level of his security protection when he is in the UK. The Duke of Sussex had been trying to overturn a ruling which saw his security status downgraded after he stopped being a “working royal”. His lawyers argued there was unfairness in how the decision was made. The Home Office previously said his security was decided on a case-by-case basis.

Back in December, when the challenge was made, Home Office lawyers told the High Court Prince Harry would still have publicly-funded police security, but these would be “bespoke arrangements, specifically tailored to him”, rather than the automatic security provided for full-time working royals. Much of the legal proceedings, which covered security arrangements for senior figures, were held in private in December, with the ruling issued by retired High Court judge Sir Peter Lane on Wednesday morning.

The ruling could have implications for the Duke’s future visits to the UK, as he previously argued that the lower level of security has made it difficult to bring his family to the country.

In the ruling, Sir Peter rejected the Duke’s case, finding that there had not been any unlawfulness in reaching the decision to downgrade Prince Harry’s security status, and that any departure from policy was justified. It found the decision was not irrational, nor marred by procedural unfairness. In the 51-page, partially redacted document, Sir Peter said Harry’s lawyers had taken “an inappropriate, formalist interpretation of the Ravec process”.

Ravec, or the Royal and VIP Executive Committee, arranges security for members of the Royal Family and other VIPs. It has delegated responsibility from the Home Office, and has involvement from the Metropolitan Police, the Cabinet Office and the royal household. The ruling also found that the “‘bespoke’ process devised” for Prince Harry by Ravec “was, and is, legally sound”.

[From BBC]

I have no idea if Prince Harry actually thought he was ever going to win any of these legal challenges, but I’ve always believed that he did all of this to simply put some things on the record and to show everyone that the whole process was pretty hinky. Plus, I think Harry was going on his own little fact-finding mission, because he initially did not understand how and why he got screwed over so badly. I always go back to Harry’s mother and how she didn’t have royal protection in the last year of her life, and how the Firm always claimed that Diana herself rejected royal protection. Harry was like: they’re not doing that to me, I’m putting it on the record that they removed my security by a shady, unfair process and that the order came from Buckingham Palace and Clarence House.

Update: This is Harry’s response, via a legal spokesperson: “The Duke is not asking for preferential treatment, but for a fair and lawful application of RAVEC’s own rules..The Duke’s case is that the so-called “bespoke process” that applies to him, is no substitute for that risk analysis. The Duke of Sussex hopes he will obtain justice from the Court of Appeal, and makes no further comment while the case is ongoing.”

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Cover Images.

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57 Responses to “Prince Harry ‘lost’ his High Court challenge over why his royal protection was pulled”

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  1. s808 says:

    I don’t consider this a true loss but I’m sure he does but at least he can say he did everything he could. The work continues.

  2. sevenblue says:

    Before Harry’s case, I don’t think we even knew courtiers were on the security committee. I think, Harry is now seeing the lack of his mother’s security with different lenses now. There is no doubt they would protect an ex-wife while they aren’t protecting the grandson of the Queen and the son of the King. I am glad, it is all on record now.

  3. Dee(2) says:

    I think we all expected this result and I’m glad he has it on the record. This way whenever what the hell is going on with William and Kate finally gets exposed ( and it will) the whole Harry has to come back to help can be immediately met with, sorry!

    • JanetDR says:

      Exactly right!

    • swaz says:

      This is what I expected too ☹☹ I just wish that Diana had done the same when they pulled her security ☹☹ When it comes to the Royal Family you really have to get things documented, they have too many spin doctors ☹☹

    • Christine says:

      Agreed. Get it all on the record, Harry. Thinking people can see what is happening clearly.

    • Becks1 says:

      Yup, get all in out in the open so that its on the record – like Kaiser said, it really brings into the question the whole “Diana turned away her royal security” and I think Harry wants to make sure his narrative is set.

  4. Walking the Walk says:

    Well now we know no one is seeing Meghan or those kids in the UK ever again.

    Maybe for CREX’s funeral. That’s about it.

    • Snappyfish says:

      They have already announced that Harry was in talks to bring his family over for the 10th anniversary of Invictus in May. I would see that visit faster than at CREX funeral. I’m not sure you can attend a King’s funeral without invitation. The general consensus in here is that William is an awful person so who says he doesn’t ban his brother from the event. He will be King & can do what he wishes. I doubt he would bar H simply for forms sake but I could see a H only trip.

      • Walking the Walk says:

        I don’t think even William is that dumb to ban him. No matter what we all speculate here, William understands that the optics at that level would make him look like the pettiest MF ever out there.

        But back to your first comment, I wonder if he will just come over solo. I would.

      • jemmy says:

        I don’t think William can Ban Harry from attending his father’s funeral – the government can step in and override that decision as the father’s funeral would be a state function.

      • Gabby says:

        If you start a sentence with “Even William isn’t dumb enough to …….[add verb here]” he will take it as a challenge and proceed to show you that he certainly is.

  5. Just Jade says:

    It was always expected that he would lose that case. Years from now when his children ask why they are not visiting that island he can say that he fought for security but lose.

  6. Maxine Branch says:

    Harry fought the good fight for getting this on record. Also, this saves his children from having to suffer his birth family. Hopeful this will incentive him to not bring his beloved family to his home country. As he mentioned in his brief the welfare of his family is paramount to him. As if this matters, the shame is on his family. The global community now has evidence as well with this judgement.

    • Tessa says:

      Imagine how those children would be treated. Lily is given a hard time by derangers for her own name. William would ignore them. The children will be aware of what went on in future

  7. windyriver says:

    Was going to write, what’s a “formalist interpretation”? Does that mean Harry’s team based their argument on logic? But I see his team has already issued a statement.

  8. Chantal1 says:

    This ruling is surprisingly unsurprising. But bc of this ruling, if I were Harry, I’d make sure the IG were never held in the UK again. Bc neither he, his family, nor the participants and their families would be truly safe with this ridiculous approach to security. And that’s not including the noxious BM. Just think – the son of the current king isn’t guaranteed security while in the UK, the justifications for revoking his security is trash, and his security has to be evaluated on a case by case basis. But also, I wouldn’t trust any security they provided anyway after all of this bs. The utter ridiculousness of it all!

    • Whyforthelove says:

      Agree 100%

    • Roo says:

      Chantal, you bring up a great point about IG. I wonder if the power brokers who desperately want them to come back to England are gnashing their teeth over this ruling. I mean, think how much money and goodwill is brought by the games!

    • Walking the Walk says:

      It’s bizarre to me that with the UK wanting to host that no one thought of this Chantal1.

      Also, all this ruling says is that Prince Harry can come back, but the security will have to be run through these people who wish him and his family harm. The only saving grace I see with his return two weeks back was that CREX had security waiting for him and taking him back.

  9. SothernCrone says:

    These fools are so very short sighted. Given the utter sh-tshow that is the BRF right now, one would think it would be advantageous to make it easier for the only truly popular royal and his family to visit the country of his birth. They are missing forest for the trees. If you want to the monarchy to survive (and the caste system and status quo it supports), you need every resource you can get. We are watching the monarchy crumble in real time and they are busy scoring points on their best asset, Harry.

    • Jais says:

      I’d imagine some of the BM and rota are disappointed with this verdict. It confirms that Harry’s visits will be few and far between. Which was known but now it’s double known.

  10. I hope that this will get the press here in the states that it deserves. That Harry is being treated unfairly over on salt isle for his protection. I hope/wish a real journalist will point out the facts of the case and wonder why a Prince can’t be protected in his country of origin.

  11. M says:

    The idea of assigning security based on “work” status and not threat status should show people how much of a joke it is. That would be like a child of the President not getting Secret Service protection because they don’t “work” for the presidency. Insane.

  12. Amy Bee says:

    I agree with Kaiser that Harry “lost” the case. He got everything on record and exposed the fact that RAVEC exists. I love Harry’s statement and that he’s exhausting all avenues. He may still lose his appeal but at least with every hearing he has pulled back the curtain and unlike his mother the Palace will be unable to tell the lie that he refused security.

  13. ML says:

    Out of curiosity, how does protection work when say the king is in the same area as Paedrew? Is Paedrew paying for his own protection every single time he ventures past “the safety zone,” or does he get bonus protection from other “working” royals? How much does he spend on private security per year? He’s the criminal spare, as it were.

    • sevenblue says:

      Andrew’s security didn’t get cut for some time after he stopped being a working royal. As I remember it as Harry’s case for security was going, Charles said that he is now personally paying for Andrew’s security. So, according to the reports, Andrew has security paid by King’s personal funds.

      • ML says:

        Thanks, SevenBlue, I had forgotten about that. I just can’t imagine how it would be like to have a family like that. Anyone (Eugenie, Mike Tindall, whoever) in that family then who does have to cover their own security expenses and how does that work when in public with a protected royal?

      • sevenblue says:

        @ML, In large gatherings where VIPs are attending, there are already lots of security in place. You don’t pay for that. That’s why the public royal events cost so much to taxpayers. Also, some non-working royals have houses inside royal estates with established security protecting the estate. So, they don’t have to pay for security while living there. Andrew’s case was similar, his house has already security paid by taxpayers. His need for security was when he leaves his home to go somewhere, he needs security. Imo, Charles is controlling Andrew’s movements through that. I remember before he was paying for it, Andrew started visiting rich men in middle east to get some funds. Charles stopped that. No doubt, Andrew’s security personnel get their orders from Charles.

  14. Walking the Walk says:

    Update: This is Harry’s response, via a legal spokesperson: “The Duke is not asking for preferential treatment, but for a fair and lawful application of RAVEC’s own rules..The Duke’s case is that the so-called “bespoke process” that applies to him, is no substitute for that risk analysis. The Duke of Sussex hopes he will obtain justice from the Court of Appeal, and makes no further comment while the case is ongoing.”

    Good for him. Because it’s so random. They are arguing that they should be allowed to do whatever they want because hey still protection, and Harry is arguing, actually follow your own rules and let me just pay for it and allow my people to be informed of threats.

  15. LRB says:

    As a Brit I am so very ashamed of Charles and actually more especially Willi. Willi saw what happened to his mother, does he really want blood on his hands? I adore Harry and Meghan but hope they just stay away…something is up in the house of Wails… Willi’s non appearance yesterday was bizarre. It will all come out, it always does. Harry and Meghan continue to do good in the world. However, I think the role they would both thrive on would be representing the BRF in the Commonwealth. Taking away their commonwealth responsibilities was such a disappointment, given they had proved how successful they were. And Meghan’s mixed race background gave her a very grounded approach to all the issues that Willi and Kate just don’t seem able to comprehend.

    • Kingston says:

      @LRB says:
      “As a Brit I am so very ashamed of Charles….”

      As a nonbrit, I too am ashamed of that pathetic little man.
      And I really wish Harry could, like M, come to the realization that he “lost” his father a very loooooong time ago (if he ever did have a real father in chucky) and therefore, treat his relationship with chucky as he does any other senior figure in the military and govt, given that he seeks to maintains good relations with them because of Invictus……, just as how he wouldnt rush over on a transatlantic flight to visit with any member of the military or govt if he heard they had cancer, so too should chucky be treated: H would see him if he’s still alive the next time H has a reason to visit the uk.

    • jemmy says:

      Both William & KC3 are on the same page with this as they see this as punishment for going against their wish for Harry not to get married to Meghan. Don’t forget before they got to this point, BM was being used to thrash Meghan thereby putting presssure on the marriage to break. I would not be surprised if she was offered money to just disappear and leave the family.

      One may ask if they felt so strongly why did they allow the marriage to go ahead? I believe they were playing the long game – allow the marriage go ahead so that to the world they look good, then work at discrediting M to the point that no one believes her whilst trying to either make her flee or un-alive her.

      They know that Harry truly loves Meghan but as far as they are concerned , duty comes before love or personal interests. The married ins are always replaceable. Even everyone but the heir is replaceable.

  16. aquarius64 says:

    I’m sorry Harry lost his case. The bright side is Harry can’t be brought back or guilted back into going to Kingston’s funeral, even Charles’ funeral b/c RAVEC won’t provide security. RAVEC guaranteed the UK is out of the running for hosting the Invictus Games.

  17. Nanea says:

    This court ruling proves, once again, that a monarchy is not a democracy.

    The powers that be couldn’t care less about the security of someone who’s not only a son of the current HoS, but also a veteran, just because they don’t like that the woman he married has more melanin than the rest of the family and both H&M were no longer willing to accept the daily, constant vile (misogynoir) abuse from the British media and the leaks and backstabbing from the courtiers and H’s family.

    Fingers crossed for the appeal.

    • Eurydice says:

      This. People who say the RF has no power should look at this case – they can do whatever they want and come up with a million reasons for justifying it.

  18. Shawna says:

    The case was always about the question of due process, not about whether he gets security or not per se. What must be so difficult is to obtain solid proof that the Ravec officials did have a bias against him and acted in conformance to that bias. So basically yeah, I don’t see how he could have won.

    • Kingston says:

      Which might be proved on appeal. And with a different judge who doesnt have a record of bias in favor of govt decisions, as there is with this retired judge who oversaw this case.

  19. San Diego says:

    This is just sad but predictable. This type of ruling is also why I think whatever is going on with W&K is not as bad as we think. If it was, they would influence the outcome to allow H and his family protection.

    • MsIam says:

      Although William hates Harry, I don’t know that anything involving him and his wife should influence whether Harry gets security. This is just more “punishment” for Harry disobeying the Crown and not covering for his fcuk up big brother.

  20. Harper says:

    Ye Olde Retired Judge who made the decision isn’t going to piss off the old white guys who give him this paying side hustle and rule against them.

    File this under things that didn’t go Harry’s way but ended up being the best for him and his family anyway–like the half-in/half-out proposal being shouted down. However, it’s ironic that this ruling, months in the making, comes out the same day that NYC police announce that Harry and Meghan were unlawfully pursued by papparazzi and that their security will be upgraded for future visits.

    • Shawna says:

      My understanding was that it wasn’t a coincidence. The NYC police announcement wasn’t exactly an announcement but filed as part of this court case and thus available for reporting now.

  21. Gabby says:

    This is going to hit the BTM where it hurts. The UK can expect to see a lot less of the Sussexes, and I hope this puts the final nail in the coffin of the UK’s Invictus bid.

  22. Cathy says:

    This case may have been a “loss” but now we know the circumstances behind Harry losing his protection and that it was down to a threat to stop legal action mentioning Christian Jones. That’s now on record, so why aren’t people asking what is it about Christian Jones that the men in grey and why did they want to protect him?

  23. Snuffles says:

    I’m glad Harry got everything on the record. Now he just needs to sit back and let the royal family implode on themselves. They’ll be begging for his return soon enough.

    • Mary Pester says:

      And now the rest of the world can see the sickness at the heart of the UK, it’s the Royal family and their toads.
      Harry is the son of the king, how dare they ever question that he and his family should be awarded the same protections as the rest of them!!
      Ravec is a stain on this country, but not as big a one as the Windsors.
      We have a father, willing to sacrifice his sons life, along with that of his dil and grandchildren,we have a brother, (the useless pratt) willing to do the same. We have a legal system, presented with proof of the dangers facing them from another country and they ignore it. You all know me, and you know I’m not a conspiracy nut. I have always believed that Diana was unalived, and I think at the heart of the Royal household they want the same for her youngest, independent and thriving son
      Final thought, Diana had Dodi, Harry has Megan, shall we play “spot the common denominator”.

      • ArtFossil says:

        Thank you, Mary Pester. What is rarely reported is that Harry’s threat levels are through the roof, because of his Afghanistan service and his marriage to Meghan. And his protection is a matter of national security as he could be taken hostage to threaten the King.

      • WiththeAmerican says:

        Plus, two white supremacists were recently convicted in Britain of plotting acts of terr orism over M, H and their two babies.

        How they can deny their need for security is beyond me.

    • Crystal says:

      That’s it’s, control. They can provide security for him when they need him. For 45mins. If he gets the protection for his family it’s truly for MEGHAN. In there eyes because Dear Boy we will protect you and the children on royal grounds. They refuse to help aid her. They will continue to allow Harry on royal grounds, cover to fly home, but not her and if that costs not seeing the kids it’s all CONTROL of Hazzz

  24. Jais says:

    Here’s my thing. The UK has a monarchy. Many people do support it and those are some of the same people saying we shouldn’t have to pay for Harry’s security. There is something so bleak and dystopian about a country supporting a monarchy that has a child filmed leaving the hospital and then put into a fishbowl for the rest of his life, with the media breathlessly reporting on his whole life, stirring up interest and then saying but if you ever leave or want something else for your life then we’ll cut off your security. Even though it’s the very system we support, that you were born into, through no choice of your own that has made you a person of interest your entire life. This is a communal blood on everyone’s hands type of situation. Dystopian. Grotesque. Anyone who says they don’t want the UK paying for Harry better be an out and proud anti-monarchist or they really need to STFU.

  25. QuiteContrary says:

    Harry still wins, by highlighting the insanity of this process — and the cruelty of his father and his father’s minions.

    Any time some member of the rota writes nonsense about Charles yearning to see his Sussex grandchildren, it should include a disclaimer about how Charles’ own actions have made that difficult.

  26. AC says:

    This just confirms even more so that they can’t do their shady sh$t on American soil.

  27. WiththeAmerican says:

    On the record. Diana’s security was pulled for punitive reasons. She was then chased and killed.

    This is absolutely sickening. A “family” institution that actively seeks to put its own family at risk of being murdered. I am disgusted. And the queen looks dodgy too, was she involved in pulling Diana’s security or was that Charles.

  28. blunt talker says:

    Harry is making a historical record-to show how he was treated differently-the incident in New york was real and the Sussexes did not lie-RAVEC-Harry also stated that some royal members were a part of Ravec and that Mr. Young does what the royal family tells them to do-when history is written or if anything happens to any of the Sussexes you best believe all this will be discussed in a way one cannot imagine-when you have to put people in jail for threatening Harry and his son this past year-Harry was threatened back in 2020 and that person went to jail-you have had royal writers and reporters say things that they would not want said about them or their family-ddragging Meghan naked through the streets by one royal writer a couple of years ago-Mr. Low or Mr. Bowers said this-don’t remember which one because both have been very cruel in reporting on Meghan particularly-All this will be recorded for the history books-they rest well assured it will-God bless and keep the Sussex family safe and protected from all evil and evil doers.