Canadian taxpayers might be on the hook for many dollars a year in security expenses if Britain’s Prince Harry and his wife Meghan move there, even part time, as they step faraway from their royal duties, security experts said.
The couple, formally referred to as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, stunned Queen Elizabeth and therefore the remainder of the royalty in the week by saying they decide to spend much of their time in North America. While the pair haven’t said where in North America they planned to reside, many observers pointed to Canada as a logical choice.
The couple spent the last six weeks of 2019 therein nation, a part of British Commonwealth of nations that have the queen as their head of state.
The Canadian government would likely have a legal obligation to supply them with security due to their royal status, security experts said.
“I do not believe they will refuse the govt of Canada’s security,” said Larry Busch, an ex-Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officer who directed security for world leaders including US presidents and therefore the royalty .
The cost could easily run into the many dollars, said Mike Zimet, whose eponymous ny executive security firm has protected clients including US Senator Bernie Sanders and actors Lin-Manuel Miranda and Alec Baldwin. “If they need private protection, then an entire machine must be built around them,” he said.
The level of security they have would be defined by a threat assessment, said Joe Balz, president of GloProSec Preventative Services, a Toronto-based security company, and an ex-RCMP officer who has worked with the royalty and other heads of state within the past.
“There’s always getting to be the odd idiot who causes some sort of problem,” Balz said, adding that they might be safer in Canada than within the us , where gun laws are much laxer.
Prince Harry and Meghan have said gaining financial autonomy may be a key goal, but declined to mention whether this extends to the value of security, stating that their security detail is remitted by British headquarters . They also would wish to stress about kidnapping of their son, Archie, said Zimet, who called that threat a “major situation, especially when it involves terrorists.