KEY POINTS

  • Prince Harry wants to be allowed to pay for police protection while he and his family are in the U.K. 
  • The Duke of Sussex argued that his private security team in the U.S. does not have adequate jurisdiction in his home country
  • A government spokesperson said the U.K.'s "protective security system is rigorous and proportionate"

Prince Harry feels that it is not safe for him to bring his family back to his home country unless he can ensure that the necessary police protection is in place.

The Duke of Sussex, who lost his tax-payer-funded police security when he stepped back from royal duties in 2020, has filed a claim for a judicial review against the refusal of the U.K. Home Office to allow him to personally pay for police protection when in the country, the BBC reported, citing a legal representative for Prince Harry.

Prince Harry wants to bring his son Archie, 2, and daughter Lilibet, 7 months, to the U.K., but he and his family are "unable to return to his home" because the duke feels it is too dangerous for them, the spokesperson said.

The younger son of Prince Charles and Princess Diana argued that his private security team in the U.S. does not have adequate jurisdiction in the U.K., where the threat is higher.

In a statement obtained by the BBC, a government spokesperson said the U.K.'s "protective security system is rigorous and proportionate."

"It is our long-standing policy not to provide detailed information on those arrangements," the statement continued. "To do so could compromise their integrity and affect individuals' security."

Prince Harry's move follows an incident in London in July 2021 when his security was compromised after his car was chased by paparazzi as he left a charity event.

Prince Harry, who originally applied for a judicial review in September 2021, hopes to fund the security himself as he does not want to "impose on the taxpayer," but he cannot, unless the Home Office approves his offer, his representative said.

"Prince Harry inherited a security risk at birth, for life," his rep stated. "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."

The duke believes that his private security team is not capable of providing the protection needed in the U.K. due to insufficient jurisdiction and lack of access to U.K. intelligence information.

He first offered to pay the costs of police protection in January 2020 at Sandringham, when talks with Queen Elizabeth II were being held over the Sussexes' future role, but the offer was dismissed, according to the representative.

Prince Harry then filed the claim in September last year "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 spokesperson said.

"The U.K. 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," the statement said.

According to the representative, Prince Harry felt it was necessary to release a statement "setting the facts straight" after "a leak in a U.K. tabloid, with surreptitious timing." Mail on Sunday earlier broke the story that the duke had sought a judicial review of the Home Office decision.

Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle announced they were stepping back as working royals in January 2020  and attended their final royal engagement two months later. The couple settled down in Montecito, California, with their son Archie and welcomed their second child Lili in June last year.

While Prince Harry has returned to the U.K. twice since their move to California, Markle and Archie have not visited the country since 2020. The couple's 7-month-old daughter also has yet to meet her great-grandmother Queen Elizabeth, grandfather Prince Charles and other members of the royal family.

Meghan Markle, Prince Harry and Archbishop Desmond Tutu CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. Photo: Toby Melville - Pool/Getty Images