UK court rejects Prince Harry bid for police protection
Prince Harry has lost an attempt to challenge the UK government over his security arrangements while in the UK, according to a ruling published on Tuesday.
Harry and his wife Meghan lost their UK taxpayer-paid protection when they quit frontline royal duties in 2020 and moved to North America.
The couple have their own private security team in the United States but Harry says they do not have adequate jurisdiction or access to UK intelligence to keep his family safe when they are in the UK.
The prince, known formally as the Duke of Sussex, had been asking for a legal review of a decision refusing him permission to pay for the UK security himself.
Lawyers for the interior ministry argued that it was “not appropriate” for wealthy people to “buy” protective security when it had decided that it was not in the public interest for such protection to be paid for by the taxpayer.
London’s Metropolitan Police also opposed Harry’s offer on the grounds that it would be wrong to “place officers in harm’s way upon payment of a fee by a private individual”.
In a ruling issued on Tuesday, London High Court judge Martin Chamberlain backed the interior ministry and police decision and refused Harry permission to challenge it in court.
“I refuse permission to apply for judicial review,” he said in a written judgment.
Harry is also involved in a separate trial at the same court against tabloid publisher Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN) for alleged unlawful information gathering.
He is expected to give evidence at that trial in June.