Prince Harry gets green light to appeal High Court ruling over police protection in UK

6 June 2024, 18:47

The Duke of Sussex took legal action against the Home Office over a decision in 2020 to change the level of his personal security
The Duke of Sussex took legal action against the Home Office over a decision in 2020 to change the level of his personal security. Picture: Alamy

By Flaminia Luck

Prince Harry's been given the green light to appeal a High Court ruling over the police protection he receives in the UK.

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The Sussexes were stripped of their protection when they stepped back from royal duties in 2020.

Earlier this year, the Duke of Sussex lost his legal challenge against a Home Office decision to change his level of personal security when he visits.

His lawyers argued he was "singled out".

But the High Court said there'd been no "procedural unfairness".

Prince Harry pictured leaving the High Court after a hearing about his phone hacking case (file image)
Prince Harry pictured leaving the High Court after a hearing about his phone hacking case (file image). Picture: Alamy

Harry’s legal team previously argued he had been singled out and treated “less favourably” than other royals when he was denied the right to automatic police protection in the UK.

Immediately after the ruling lawyers for Harry said he plans to appeal - which today ge got the go-ahead for.

But the Government argued Harry’s claim should be dismissed, arguing the Executive Committee for the Protection of Royalty and Public Figures (Ravec), which falls under the Home Office, was entitled to conclude the Duke’s protection should be “bespoke” and considered on a “case-by-case” basis.

Harry sued the Home Office after it refused to spend taxpayers’ money on him after he left the royal family.

A decision was reached this morning that there had been no ‘unlawfulness’ in the decisions made by the Home Office to pull Harry’s security.

Read more: Police find body in search for two-year-old boy Xielo Maruziva, who fell into a river in February

The Sussexes were stripped of their protection when they stepped back from royal duties in 2020
The Sussexes were stripped of their protection when they stepped back from royal duties in 2020. Picture: Alamy

Read more: Man who pushed child, who discovered sexual abuse, off 100ft cliff guilty of attempted murder

A statement in February read: "The court has found that there has not been any unlawfulness in reaching the decision of 28 February 2020.

"Any departure from policy was justified. The decision was not irrational."The decision was not marred by procedural unfairness. Even if such
procedural unfairness occurred, the court would in any event be prevented from granting the claimant relief.

"This is because, leaving aside any such unlawfulness, it is highly likely that the outcome for the claimant would not have been substantially
different."

"The court has also found that there has been no unlawfulness on the part of RAVEC in respect of its arrangements for certain of the claimant’s visits to Great Britain, following the decision of 28 February 2020."

A Home Office spokesperson said: “We are pleased that the Court has found in favour of the Government’s position in this case, and we are carefully considering our next steps.

It would be inappropriate to comment further”.

“The UK Government’s protective security system is rigorous and proportionate. It is our long-standing policy not to provide detailed information on those arrangements, as doing so could compromise their integrity and affect individuals’ security”.

The Sussexes were stripped of their protection when they stepped back from royal duties in 2020.

In December, 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.

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