FORMER home secretary Priti Patel has apologised to King Charles after her email to his top aide reportedly backing the restoration of security detail to Prince Andrew was leaked.
In her correspondence with the monarch’s principal private secretary Sir Clive Alderton, Patel is believed to have said the taxpayer-funded protection for the Duke of York was “something to be considered”.
In November, the royal was stripped of his security detail – estimated to cost 3 million a year – as he gave up his HRH title after he settled a sexual abuse case brought by campaigner Virginia Giuffre in the US.
Patel told the Sun after her email was leaked: “It is disappointing that this correspondence has been leaked into the public domain and I apologise to His Majesty for the embarrassment and difficulties the publishing of this correspondence has caused.”
Andrew’s reputation was ruined after Giuffre, 38, claimed she had sex with the royal when she was 17 following their meeting through the late American financier Jeffrey Epstein.
Epstein killed himself in a New York City jail cell in 2019 while awaiting his own trial for sex crimes.
Andrew is believed to have spent an estimated 12m for the out-of-court settlement of Giuffre’s claim to stave off a trial.
In January last year, Andrew was stripped of his honorary military titles and charitable roles.
In June, a New York court sentenced Andrew’s long-time friend Ghislaine Maxwell to 20 years in jail for sex trafficking on behalf of Epstein.