Bust-up over a fruit machine led to arrest & family shame..
Meg move is creating a security headache Markle blames pain pills for ‘drink-drive’
HARRY and Meghan’s relocation to a cottage at Windsor could leave them without a permanent protection team.
Scotland Yard is understood to be having trouble recruiting the highly trained officers needed to assemble a full-time unit for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex in time for their move.
The couple, expecting their first child in the spring, are moving from Kensington Palace to the grounds of Windsor Castle. They have decided to keep their offices in London but live at Frogmore Cottage.
A temporary security team could be assembled from Scotland Yard’s Royalty and Specialist Protection branch.
A senior security source said: “It’s a huge task assembling a team capable of working closely with members of the Royal Family, and it’s fair to say this is proving a challenge.
“Not only because of issues surrounding the move to Windsor and still working in London but the dynamic of their family will be changing soon.
“Then there is the added structure of the team travelling between Berkshire and London.”
Meghan’s female private protection officer quit after less than six months, it emerged yesterday. The police inspector was on the royals’ tour Down Under and led the call to rush Meghan, 37, out of a market in Fiji amid security concerns.
A source said: “Several suitable officers, male and female, haven’t exactly been rushing forward for the role. The issues stem around complicated shift work and the amount of travel.”
The Met said: “We do not comment on the security arrangements of members of the
ON RECRUITMENT PROBLEM
THE Duchess of Sussex’s half-brother has said his arrest on suspicion of drink-driving was sparked by a blazing row with his fiancee over a pub fruit machine.
Thomas Markle Jnr, who was stopped in his Chevy Silverado truck at 1.33am last Friday, has apologised to Meghan and the rest of his family for bringing “shame” on them.
Police in Oregon said the 52-year-old’s bloodalcohol level was 0.11% against a limit of 0.8%.
But he insists he failed a roadside test because of medicines he is taking for pain in his leg.
Thomas said he was using over-the-counter painkillers and flu remedies as he cannot afford health insurance to use a doctor.
And he added that the row with fiancee Darlene Blount, 38, blew up when she refused to leave a bar they were in and go home.
Thomas said: “We were in a bar and Darlene refused to stop playing the slots. I wanted to go home as it was late but she didn’t.
“When we finally got in the car, she was furious and the row just continued from there.
“When we got home all hell broke loose. I didn’t want things to escalate so I packed up my things, put them in my truck and left. It was why I was on the road so late. When the police pulled me over I said I was in agonising pain with my leg. The officer demonstrated how he wanted me to walk in a straight line.
“I told them there was no way I could. He then arrested me.”
The arrest is the latest family embarrassment for Meghan, 37, who fell out with their father Thomas Markle Snr, 74, after he colluded with paparazzi in the run-up to her wedding. He has since given a string of interviews that have irritated the palace. The arrest also comes two months after Thomas and Darlene vowed to give up drinking after a string of bustups involving police.
Thomas Jnr said: “We want to be together but we need to quit drinking. I am genuinely sorry for the shame this has brought on my family and I hope they, as well as Meghan, can forgive me.”
Just days before his arrest, Thomas said he would wed Darlene in March, and that Meghan and Harry were invited. He proposed in a park near their home in Grants Pass, Oregon.
In November, domestic violence charges against Darlene for allegedly giving Thomas a black eye were dropped after he declined to testify in court.
And two years ago, Thomas was held after
Darlene & Thomas Jnr
SCARE The alert at Fiji market in October SAFETY FEARS Meghan will give birth in the spring
MUGSHOT Our story on his arrest STORMY
RIFT Their dad Thomas Snr