Prince of Monaco makes secret payments to former mistresses, out-of-wedlock children: Report
The illustrious Principality of Monaco, long known for its opulent lifestyle and high-profile scandals, is currently facing another controversy.
Reports have emerged alleging that Prince Albert, the "playboy" royal, maintained a secret bank account purportedly used to support his former mistress and their illegitimate children financially.
The reports also claim that Princess Charlene, Prince Albert's wife, is accused of extravagant spending, with allegations that her family members were also receiving funds from the royal coffers.
The source of these allegations is Claude Palmero, a former accountant for Monaco's royal family, who served for over two decades before his abrupt dismissal last year, as the Daily Mail reported.
Financial Extravagance and Unchecked Spending
Palmero's detailed records, chronicled in five voluminous notebooks, paint a picture of Princess Charlene's lavish expenditures. Despite receiving a yearly allowance of approximately £1.2 million, she frequently exceeded this amount.
In 2017, she reportedly required over £500,000 to cover a significant overdraft. By 2019, her spending habits had escalated to such a degree that Palmero, in his notes, expressed his inability to regulate her financial activities.
Princess Charlene, a former Olympic swimmer from South Africa, is accused of spending nearly £2 million on refurbishing a Corsican holiday home and her office.
Additionally, Palmero alleges that she rented another property on the same French island for personal use.
The records also reveal instances of large cash requests by Charlene, including a single payment of £171,000 from Prince Albert in 2020.
Familial Benefits and Love Children
The financial largesse extended beyond Charlene to her family. Her brother, Sean Wittstock, with whom she operates a charitable organization, reportedly received £786,000 in 2022 to purchase a house. He currently runs a coffee shop in Monaco.
Furthermore, Prince Albert's complex personal life appears to have impacted his financial stability significantly. The Prince, who ascended as the head of the Grimaldi dynasty in 2005, has acknowledged the paternity of two children born out of wedlock: Alexandre, born to Nicole Coste in 2003, and Jazmin, born to Tamara Rotolo in 1993.
In 2020, another potential love child, then aged 15 and residing in Brazil, claimed to be Albert's offspring. This allegation, however, was labeled a "hoax" by a royal spokesperson.
Financial documents suggest that Jazmin Grace Grimaldi, despite not being an official member of the royal family, receives £73,000 every quarter.
Furthermore, the palace has taken measures such as kidnap and ransom insurance for Alexandre. The out-of-wedlock son's mother, Nicole Coste, also convinced Albert to invest in her fashion business in 2015, an endeavor Palmero estimated could cost up to one million euros annually.
Controversial Employment Practices
Palmero's notes also shine a light on potentially illicit employment practices within the royal household. He warned Prince Albert of Princess Charlene's use of undocumented workers, including a reference to a Filipino woman tasked with unconventional duties.
In 2017, he noted concerns about an employee from the Philippines who had overstayed a one-month tourist visa by five years, receiving payment well above normal rates.
Following the birth of Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella in 2014, Palmero claimed that their care was entrusted to nannies who were also residing in Monaco illegally. He also expressed disapproval of additional staff hires by Charlene in 2021, pointing out the unprecedented size of her personal staff.
Response from the Principality
In response to these allegations, the prince's legal team stated that if payments were made to illegal workers, Palmero himself would have authorized them. Palmero, now accused of embezzlement, vehemently denies these charges, asserting his innocence and dedication to the princely family.
Prince Albert has publicly denounced Palmero's accusations as indicative of his disrespect for the family and the Principality of Monaco.