Belfast Telegraph

Duke and duchess issue stern warning to Prince George paps

Britain's Prince George has become the paparazzi's number one target, according to Kensington Palace.

The two-year-old heir to the British throne is the son of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. While the couple have released a number of official pictures of the toddler, most recently with his parents and baby sister Princess Charlotte, they have issued a stern warning to photographers about trying to obtain unofficial pictures of the youngster.

"The duke and duchess have been delighted to share official photographs of Prince George and Princess Charlotte in recent months to thank the public for the thousands of kind messages of support they have received," said Jason Knauf, the couple's press secretary in a statement on the Prince of Wale's website on Friday. "Despite this, paparazzi photographers are going to increasingly extreme lengths to observe and monitor Prince George's movements and covertly capture images of him to sell to the handful of international media titles still willing to pay for them."

While the British media do not purchase or publish such images, the royal couple decided to release the frank letter after becoming aware of a number of disturbing instances involving the paparazzi who try and sell the shots to international publications.

Last week one photographer was found adding sheets to a rented car's already darkened windows to make a hide at a playground. He had food and drinks with him to get through a day of surveillance and was caught lying in the boot of the car attempting to shoot pictures through a small gap he had created.

"It is clear that while paparazzi are always keen to capture images of any senior member of the royal family, Prince George is currently their number one target,” the letter continued. “We have made the decision to discuss these issues now as the incidents are becoming more frequent and the tactics more alarming. A line has been crossed and any further escalation in tactics would represent a very real security risk."

Prince William and Kate acknowledge in the letter that they are very fortunate to have private homes but it has never been their intention to restrict either of their children to these areas.

"They feel strongly that both Prince George and Princess Charlotte should not grow up exclusively behind palace gates and in walled gardens," the statement continued. "They want both children to be free to play in public and semi-public spaces with other children without being photographed."

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From Belfast Telegraph