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LONDON — You might forgive Britain’s royal protection unit for being a little jittery.
Two days after an intruder was found prowling around Buckingham Palace, police confronted Prince Andrew, Queen Elizabeth II’s second son, in the royal residence’s garden and demanded he identify himself.
London’s Metropolitan Police said in an email Sunday it had apologized to Prince Andrew, also known as the Duke of York, and he responded with a touch of humor: “I am grateful for their apology and look forward to a safe walk in the garden in the future.”
Wednesday’s mix-up with the duke followed an even more embarrassing security breach Monday, when an intruder was arrested after having scaled the fence around the palace. The man and an alleged accomplice were arrested on suspicion of burglary and conspiracy to commit burglary, respectively.
The confrontation between the duke and police was first reported by Britain’s Sunday Express tabloid, which reported it under the eye-catching headline: “PRINCE ANDREW HELD AT GUNPOINT.”
Although the Met’s royal protection officers do sometimes carry weapons, the force denied the paper’s claim that the prince had guns pointed at him, insisting no weapons were drawn.