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Last Updated: Monday, 10 November, 2003, 15:56 GMT
Ex-valet dismisses Charles claims
Prince Charles
Prince Charles has been abroad for 13 days
Allegations made about the Prince of Wales by a former servant cannot be true, a former Royal valet has said.

A court order preventing the claims being published in England and Wales was issued eight days ago but media interest has continued to grow.

Simon Solari, who worked with Prince Charles for 15 years, said the ex-servant would not have had the chance to witness the alleged events.

He told London's Evening Standard the Prince was being "unfairly maligned".

'No legal action'

Prince Charles returned to the UK from Oman on Sunday amid newspaper reports suggesting he had instructed lawyers to consider taking legal action against the former servant making the allegation.

There was also speculation he may make a television appearance to quash the rumours.

But Clarence House - the prince's official residence - denied this was the case on Monday.

HAVE YOUR SAY
It's only thanks to the internet that anyone in the UK knows what allegation Charles is strongly denying.
Colin Wright, UK

"There are no plans to take any legal action, and the prince has no plans to make a television appearance," a Clarence House spokeswoman said.

"The statement we made on Thursday still very much stands," she added.

Prince Charles strenuously denied the allegation in a statement issued by Clarence House on Thursday, while he was in Oman.

The prince is spending Monday and Tuesday this week at his Highgrove estate.

He will attend his first public engagement - since the allegations emerged - at a Remembrance service at the Royal Hospital in Chelsea on Wednesday, the spokeswoman added.

'Unruffled'

The denial came after the Guardian newspaper won a High Court battle to name Prince Charles's ex-valet, Michael Fawcett, as the person who won an injunction to stop the allegation being printed by the Mail on Sunday newspaper last week.
There are such things as libel laws...and the Royals should take advantage of that.
Andrew Roberts, historian

While the court injunction remains in place, details of the allegation have not been printed in England and Wales.

Italian newspapers who printed details of the allegation were destroyed in the UK on Saturday and Sunday, on the orders of the company that distributes foreign newspapers in the country.

All Italian papers are now back on sale in the UK.

A Scottish newspaper, the Sunday Herald, not covered by the injunction, printed details of an alleged incident involving the prince and named another person said to be involved.

In the final days of the prince's tour of Oman, the prince was described as "unruffled" by royal aides.

He was kept informed of events in the UK, and remained in a "buoyant" mood as he continued to enjoy the trip, they said.




WATCH AND LISTEN
The BBC's Nicholas Witchell
"So far as they're concerned, this story is closed"



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