Prince Harry's naked butt has been plastered all over the internet following a weekend of partying in Las Vegas. But it seems Brits won't be able to find the photos in their favorite papers.
As Digital Journal reported yesterday Prince Harry got caught on camera with his pants down. He was apparently having a game of strip billiards with some friends and women they met at the Las Vegas hotel when someone snapped off a few pictures that inevitably ended up online.
The Guardian reports the royal family has stepped in to block Britain's newspapers from publishing the grainy mobile phone pictures that were first published on the US website TMZ.
A spokesman for Clarence House confirms that officials had contacted the Press Complaints Commission (PCC) about the photos and Prince Harry's right to privacy.
The spokesman tells The Guardian, "We wrote to the PCC simply drawing attention to clause three of the code [of conduct] and the reasonable expectations of privacy in a hotel room. This afternoon we also reminded newspapers of their own editorial codes. We've not threatened legal action. The Prince of Wales has not been involved." The last comment refers to reports that Prince Charles had threatened legal action.
The Daily Mail says Ken Wharfe, a former Royal Protection officer who guarded Princes William and Harry when they were children, says the photos should be published and he doesn't believe they are "not an invasion of privacy."
TMZ is reporting today that sources have told them that the women, who were invited up to the room, were not asked to hand over their cell phones. And that as several girls snapped photos one of the Prince's handlers simply said, "awww, come on .. no photos," but didn't take any action. The Daily Telegraph estimates the photos sold for £10,000 (abt. $16,000).
The Guardian says Wharfe criticized Harry's protection officers for a "breakdown in communication" that allowed the incident to happen.
Prince Harry flew home from America last night, and while reaction has been mixed at home in Britain, he could get a dressing-down from his father and grandmother. The Times Live quotes friends saying Harry doesn't regret anything. But US Weekly says a senior military source told them Harry, a helicopter pilot for the Royal Air Force, would be "reprimanded" by the army. And the website adds that a royal insider reports that his big brother William was "not impressed" by his antics. The Mirror quotes a royal aide saying, “Some members of the royal household are dismayed about these pictures. But Harry is like any other young man who likes to go out and party with his friends, it’s just that with him it gets more attention."
Las Vegas tourism officials are likely saying "thanks" to the Prince. The Daily Mail reports that in the 24-hours since the photos first appeared, online booking website Hotels.com has seen a 123 per cent increase in the number of searches for Las Vegas, compared to the same day last year. Other travel websites are reporting the same kind of interest with Virgin Holidays reporting an increase by about a third.