The Home Office decided the Duke of Sussex is not allowed to personally pay for police protection for himself, Meghan Markle and his children after the royals stepped down. Now, legal representatives for the royal have said Harry is afraid to return to the UK.
Legal representatives for the Duke said Harry has offered to pay for the police protection himself and that he wants to bring his son Archie and baby daughter Lilibet to visit from the US, but is “unable to return to his home”.
Now, the Duke has requested to pay for police protection himself, rather than ask taxpayers to foot the bill.
According to his representatives, Harry is arguing his private protection team in the US does not have adequate jurisdiction abroad or access to UK intelligence information which is needed keep the Sussex family safe.
Harry briefly returned from the US in July 2021 for the unveiling of a statue of his late mother Princess Diana.
The day prior, he met seriously ill children and young people at a WellChild garden party and afternoon tea in Kew Gardens, west London.
However, it is understood the Duke’s car was chased by photographers as he left.
In a statement, Harry’s legal representative said: “Prince Harry inherited a security risk at birth, for life.
“He remains sixth in line to the throne, served two tours of combat duty in Afghanistan, and in recent years his family has been subjected to well-documented neo-Nazi and extremist threats.
“While his role within the institution has changed, his profile as a member of the royal family has not. Nor has the threat to him and his family.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex personally fund a private security team for their family, yet that security cannot replicate the necessary police protection needed whilst in the UK. In the absence of such protection, Prince Harry and his family are unable to return to his home.
“The Duke first offered to pay personally for UK police protection for himself and his family in January of 2020 at Sandringham. That offer was dismissed. He remains willing to cover the cost of security, as not to impose on the British taxpayer.
“As is widely known, others who have left public office and have an inherent threat risk receive police protection at no cost to them.
“The goal for Prince Harry has been simple – to ensure the safety of himself and his family while in the UK so his children can know his home country.
“During his last visit to the UK in July 2021 – to unveil a statue in honour of his late mother – his security was compromised due to the absence of police protection, whilst leaving a charity event.
“After another attempt at negotiations was also rejected, he sought a judicial review in September 2021 to challenge the decision-making behind the security procedures, in the hopes that this could be re-evaluated for the obvious and necessary protection required.
“The UK will always be Prince Harry’s home and a country he wants his wife and children to be safe in. With the lack of police protection, comes too great a personal risk.
“Prince Harry hopes that his petition – after close to two years of pleas for security in the UK – will resolve this situation.
“It is due to a leak in a UK tabloid, with surreptitious timing, we feel it necessary to release a statement setting the facts straight.”
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