Prince Albert of Monaco admits he has illegitimate son
Thursday 07 July 2005
The grandson of the Hollywood actress Grace Kelly, named Alexandre, is now almost two years old. His mother, Nicole Coste, is originally from the African nation of Togo.
"I recognised this child before a lawyer a few weeks after its birth," Prince Albert, who usually fiercely guards his privacy, said in remarks to appear in Le Monde's II magazine on Saturday.
"The child will therefore have a father and will lack for nothing," he said. "I will watch over this and will see him often."
Albert, 47, has no other children and is not married. He took over royal powers in the Riviera principality shortly before Prince Rainier III's death in April, and will formally assume the throne on 12 July.
Asked if the child would have the family name Grimaldi, Albert said in the interview: "No. His existence will have no effect on the functioning of the regime or on my succession.
"The rules of the constitution are very clear on this matter. There will be only patrimonial consequences." Under Monaco's constitution, only a child born in wedlock can succeed to the throne.
The Prince said he regretted that Paris Match magazine went public with the story just weeks after the death of his father, Prince Rainier, in April. "I find it saddening, shocking, that this affair - which should have remained strictly private - was made public in that way, and at that time," he told Le Monde.
In a cover story in May, Paris Match alleged Albert had fathered a son with Ms Coste. Ms Coste was quoted as saying she met Albert on a flight in July 1997, leading to a relationship and the birth of a child, Alexandre, in August 2003. The interview was illustrated with Pictures of the smiling prince holding and feeding a young boy.
Ms Coste, who lives in Paris, said she went public with the story because she wanted "Alexandre to grow up normally, with a father".
The Prince wanted to face up to his responsibilities, said a statement released by Albert's lawyer, Thierry Lacoste.
"That's why he recognised the child and hopes that he can live out his childhood and adolescence in a calm and protected setting, in strict isolation from the media," said a statement issued by the lawyer.
Albert said he was tired of fielding questions about why he was still single, and said he plans to have a family when he is ready. "Allow me to go at my own pace," he said. "But I assure you, I will get married."
He caused consternation to his father because of his refusal to wed, and the constitution was revised in 2002 to circumvent the problem posed by his only-child bachelor status.
If he has no legitimate heirs, the next in line would be Princess Caroline, the eldest of Albert's two sisters. She, in turn, would be succeeded by her oldest son, Andrea Albert Pierre.
Sales of the tablet are set to fall again, say analysts
Met Police confirm there was a 'minor disturbance' and that no-one was arrested
George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios
Does Chris Grayling realise what a vague concept he is dealing with?
Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets
Parties threaten resort's image as a family destination
I Am Bread could actually be a challenging and nuanced title
- 1 Indian footballer Peter Biaksangzuala dies after injuring spine doing somersault celebration
- 4 Drink alcohol and eat meat to improve male fertility - but cut down on coffee, studies suggest
- 5 Brian Harvey turns up at Downing Street and 'demands to speak to Prime Minister'
Jack the Ripper: Scientist who claims to have identified notorious killer has 'made serious DNA error'
Banksy arrest hoax: Internet duped by fake report claiming that the street artist's identity has been revealed
'Russian submarine spotted' by Swedish military off coast of Stockholm
Brian Harvey turns up at Downing Street and 'demands to speak to Prime Minister'
Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
London bus driver allegedly kicks gay couple off for kissing
Amal Alamuddin calls for the return of the Elgin Marbles from Britain: 'Injustice has persisted for too long'
Lord Freud: Tory welfare minister apologises after saying disabled people are 'not worth’ the minimum wage
£80 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Year 5 Teacher KS2 teaching job...
£35000 - £45000 Per Annum Pensions Scheme After 6 Months: Clearwater People So...
£35000 - £37000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Systems Analyst / Busines...
£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ampersand Consulting LLP: Senior Change ...