Tense time for the royals
As Prince Philip went into hospital, Pippa Middleton’s father-in-law, David Matthews, was fighting to clear his name
‘David categorically denies the allegation and contests the untrue and scandalous accusations’
With a royal baby due any day, Prince Philip going into hospital and – of course – that wedding in May, all eyes are on the royal family at the moment.
A hip operation at 96 is major surgery, and while everyone hopes he will be well enough for Harry’s wedding on 19 May, the royals are staying tight-lipped.
But that’s not the only unwelcome news for the royal family of late.
David Matthews, the fatherin-law of Pippa Middleton – sister of the Duchess of Cambridge – has been placed under formal investigation by French authorities.
Mr Matthews, 74, has been accused of the rape of a minor on two occasions – once on the island of St Barts in 1998, where he owns Eden Roc Resort Hotel, and around a year later in Paris. The girl was reportedly 15 at the time.
Under French law, being put under formal investigation means there is ‘serious or consistent evidence’ that points to probable involvement in a crime. It is a step toward a trial, but investigations can be dropped without proceeding to court.
The multi-millionaire, whose son James married Pippa last year, was questioned after being detained when he landed at Paris Orly Airport.
But with the Middletons’ close links to the royals – Pippa Middleton is aunt to the future King George – the allegations, which Mr Matthews categorically denies, must surely be quite embarrassing for the royal family and their friends?
The woman (who hasn’t been named) is now 34, but is said to have come forward to police in Paris last year, claiming she was left feeling ‘worthless’ in the wake of the alleged assaults.
The investigation means that Mr Matthews will now be forced to fight the ‘untrue and scandalous’ accusations.
‘David Matthews categorically denies the allegations and unequivocally contests the untrue and scandalous accusations,’ said a spokesperson for the family.
There are no restrictions on Mr Matthews’ ‘freedom of movement’, and it has been reported that he’s now in St Barts.
It’s the location of just one of the homes owned by the millionaire, who began his career as an apprentice car mechanic before building up a fortune in the hotel industry.
More welcome news for the family is that Spencer Matthews, 28, David’s youngest son, is expecting a baby with model Vogue Williams, 32, later this year. The baby is believed to be due in September.
David Matthews Prince Philip