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MPs PROBE SPENDING ON CAMILLA; Aides quizzed over bills.

Byline: By Rosa Prince

ROYAL lover Camilla Parker Bowles is to be probed by MPs to ensure public cash is not funding her lavish lifestyle.

The move comes after reports that Prince Charles' live-in partner has been sharing the services of his official staff of 28 - including press officers - in recent years.

It is also not clear who funds her bodyguards, clothes, hairdressing, make-up, travel and personal needs - which are thought to cost around pounds 250,000 a year.

Divorcee Mrs Parker Bowles, 57, has no official role in Charles' life and is forbidden from benefiting from taxpayers' money.

MPs will question two of Charles's top aides on Monday about expenditure from the Duchy of Cornwall.

The Public Accounts Committee want to ensure Charles is only using money from his personal taxed income to fund her activities.

One committee member said: 'The duchy is a very profitable organisation.

'It was established with the main purpose of covering the cost of the heir apparent's public and private life.

'That, as far as I am aware, does not include his live-in partner. It's worthy of scrutiny.'

Charles is known to spend his own money on two secretaries, a gardener and a driver for long-term love Camilla.

But MPs are eager to ensure clear lines are in place between the public funds Charles is entitled to and his private allowance - which he can spend as he pleases.

Duchy secretary Bertie Ross and chief executive Paul Clarke will also answer detailed questions about the prince's financial dealings.

MPs want to check he is paying sufficient taxes .

The duchy is thought to be worth more than pounds 460million yet is exempt from paying corporation or capital gains tax.

It was recently revealed that Charles had enjoyed a 300 per cent pay rise, from pounds 3million to pounds 12million, over the last decade.

Last year alone, his salary was boosted by pounds 2million.

However, in contrast, his tenants in Cornwall have seen rents soar.


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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Feb 5, 2005
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