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Monday, 11 November, 2002, 10:20 GMT
Palace rape inquiry stays closed
St James's Palace
St James's Palace has denied a cover-up
Claims by a former Royal valet that he was raped by another male servant will not lead to the case being reopened, police have said.

George Smith waived his right to anonymity by speaking to the Mail on Sunday newspaper about the alleged assault in the late 1980s.

If Mr Smith has some new evidence relating to the case, he should provide it immediately

Spokeswoman for Prince of Wales
He accused an aide to the Prince of Wales who, in an anonymous statement released through solicitors, strenuously denied the claims.

A spokesman for Scotland Yard told BBC News Online: "The case is not being reinvestigated on the basis of a newspaper report."

Details of the alleged rape emerged following the collapse of the theft case against Paul Burrell, former butler to Diana, Princess of Wales.

Full investigation

Earlier, a spokeswoman for the Prince of Wales said there had been a full police investigation and no evidence had been found.

"If Mr Smith has some new evidence relating to the case, he should provide it immediately," she said.

Mail on Sunday
Mr Smith has waived his right to anonymity
In a statement St James's Palace said the allegations were investigated by the Palace in 1996.

"No evidence was forthcoming in support of them and the person concerned did not want to pursue the matter any further," it said.

When the allegations re-surfaced last year a member of the Royal household was interviewed by police.

The case was reviewed by the police and the Crown Prosecution Service and the Director of Public Prosecutions and no proceedings brought, St James' Palace added.

As well as the rape allegation, Mr Smith claimed he had witnessed an "incident" involving a member of the royal family and a palace servant.

Missing tape

During Mr Burrell's trial for theft at the Old Bailey it emerged Diana, Princess of Wales, had kept a cassette tape with details of a case of alleged male rape of one of Prince Charles' members of staff.

But the tape went missing from a locked box in Kensington Palace and has never been found.

In the Mail on Sunday, Mr Smith, 42, said he told the princess in 1996 about the alleged rape and she recorded his accusation.

In an ITV programme broadcast on Sunday, Mr Burrell said he had no idea what had happened to the box's contents.

"They are out there somewhere," he said.

Mr Smith, from Newport, south Wales, has also accused the Royal Family of a cover-up.

'Media frenzy'

But the man he says raped him issued a denial through Kingsley Napley solicitors on Sunday saying Mr Smith was unreliable.

The statement also said the allegations made to the Mail on Sunday differed "substantially and significantly" from those made to the police last year.

The statement continued: "Our client has consistently denied that these offences ever took place, and whilst he has no desire to enter into the current media frenzy, cannot allow wholly untrue allegations against him to be reported and unchallenged."

New rape claim

Mr Smith's interview followed confirmation from Buckingham Palace that a new allegation of male rape, unconnected to his, within the royal household was investigated last year.

A junior member of the Buckingham Palace staff complained to the police about an attack by a fellow worker.

But he later decided not to proceed with the complaint, the palace said.

Separately, Mr Burrell has dismissed an allegation made by entertainer Michael Barrymore, in the News of the World newspaper, that he tried to seduce the celebrity.

In the latest of a series of interviews with the Daily Mirror, Mr Burrell described his wife Maria as his "rock".


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11 Nov 02 | Politics
10 Nov 02 | UK
10 Nov 02 | UK
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