Pal mugged while on phone to Britain's Prince Harry

18th December 2011, Comments 0 comments

Britain's Prince Harry rushed to the aid of a friend who was robbed of his mobile phone while speaking to the royal, The Mail on Sunday newspaper said.

Harry, third in line to the throne, heard the robbery and quickly drove to the crime scene in Battersea, southwest London.

When the army helicopter pilot could not find Thomas van Straubenzee, he drove to the nearest police station, where his friend was already reporting the crime.

Harry, 27, a grandson of Queen Elizabeth II, gave a witness statement, a source said. It is thought to be the first time a senior British royal has walked into a police station to report a crime.

Van Straubenzee's mobile phone was taken during the November 30 attack.

"Police are investigating an allegation of personal robbery which occurred at approximately 8:30pm on November 30 in Albert Bridge Road," a spokesman for London's Metropolitan Police said.

"A mobile phone was taken during the robbery.

"This allegation was taken seriously, as are all allegations of robbery.

"A man was arrested on December 1 on suspicion of robbery and bailed to return in January 2012 pending further enquiries.

"The property has been recovered. No reports of any injuries."

A spokesman for Clarence House, the prince's London residence, said: "Prince Harry joined a friend at a police station in south London after his friend had reported a robbery.

"By the time Prince Harry arrived to be with his friend, the police investigation into the incident had already begun.

"The investigation is ongoing, so we cannot comment further."

The incident happened shortly after Harry returned from a nearly two-month military training mission in California, which also saw the fun-loving royal let his hair down in San Diego and Las Vegas.

He returned to Britain a qualified Apache attack helicopter pilot and the prince is known to have his sights set on a return to front-line action in Afghanistan.

Van Straubenzee, 28, is also a close friend of Harry's older brother Prince William and was an usher at his wedding to Kate Middleton in April.

The day following the robbery, Harry delivered an address at the annual carol service for the Henry van Straubenzee Memorial Fund, named after Thomas's brother, a school friend of Harry's.

© 2011 AFP

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