Prince Harry: Hearings begin over US visa records

A federal judge has begun hearing arguments in a case that hopes to make public the Duke of Sussex’s US immigration records. The lawsuit, from the conservative Heritage Foundation, seeks to compel the government to release the records to show whether drug use was disclosed. A decision in the case, being heard in Washington DC, may take weeks.

Application forms for US visas specifically ask about current and past drug use. Drug use can lead to non-immigrant and immigrant visa applications being rejected, although immigration officers have discretion to make a final decision based on a number of factors.

It is not clear what visa Prince Harry used to enter the US. His wife, Meghan Markle, is a US citizen. The couple have lived in California since 2020.

At the heart of the Heritage Foundation’s lawsuit is an admission by Prince Harry, in his memoir Spare, that he repeatedly used drugs as a teenager in the UK and as an adult. In the lawsuit, the Heritage Foundation argues that “widespread” coverage of the duke’s admitted drug use calls into question whether the government properly followed immigration law when it admitted him into the US, and whether he was given preferential treatment.

Current or past drug use could, in theory, make one inadmissible to the US.

Court documents filed by the Heritage Foundation cite a number of examples of British celebrities being refused entry or returned to the UK.

In 2010, for example, the documents said musician Pete Doherty was refused entry at an airport in New York and sent back to the UK, despite having a visa. Mr Doherty has several prior drug convictions.

In 2014, celebrity chef Nigella Lawson was prevented from boarding a flight from the UK to Los Angeles after admitting to taking cocaine “two times in my life” in evidence during an unrelated court case.

The US case is separate from an ongoing civil case in the UK in which Harry has sued Mirror Group Newspapers over allegations of phone hacking.

The biter may yet be bit … :thinking:

Another way for the media channels to fill up hours of space with non-news…


Your contribution is appreciated… :+1:

I have no idea who the Heritage group are or why they are taking this action but what is their connection to the US legal system or to Harry?

I’m no legal expert but don’t these immigration decisions depend on whether someone has been officially and legally convicted for drug offences?
Can the authorities knock back an application because of unofficial admissions/gossip/hearsay/blogs/suspicion without a formal criminal conviction?
If a person published a blog or book saying “I ate a cannabis brownie” or “smoked a joint” when I was a troubled teenager in 1970 or 1980 or 1990 or 2000 or 2010 or 2020, but they have never been convicted of drug use in the criminal courts and have never given any evidence in Court about it, would that informal admission be held against them if they had no criminal convictions or official record of that evidence?

Intriguing legal dilemma! :thinking:

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The lawsuit is being filed by the Heritage Foundation, a prominent Washington DC-based think tank that historically has had a significant impact on US public policy.

What are the rules on US visas and drug use?

In theory, known drug use can be grounds for both non-immigrant and immigrant visa applications to be rejected. The forms used for these applications specifically ask about current and past drug use, and whether the applicant is a “habitual drunkard”. It is unclear what type of visa Prince Harry is in the US on. Ms Markle is a US citizen.

US Citizenship and Immigration Services’ official policies say that visa applicants “who are found to be drug users or addicts” are inadmissible. In practice, immigration officers are given considerable leeway to make a decision based on factors including the length and severity of drug use. Prince Harry’s status as a celebrity may have also played a factor in his visa application.

Virginia-based immigration attorney Eileen Blessinger said that immigration officials deciding on any applicant’s entry to the US - or potential removal - would also have to weigh the potential benefits of letting that person in regardless of past transgressions. “There could be an economic impact in the US, and also a cultural impact,” she said. “That’s all going to weigh heavily in favour of getting someone a waiver”.

Any lies or misrepresentations on the visa forms could lead to a visa being revoked.

Immigration lawyers and experts believe that the judge is unlikely to agree with the Heritage Foundation’s lawsuit. They have never heard of immigration records being revealed to the public, and warned that doing so in Prince Harry’s case would likely have far-reaching implications in the future.

So, it seems that the Heritage Foundation will have to settle for making a point rather than making history.


If memory serves, the Heritage Foundation is a right-wing organization. Not sure why they care about this or got involved with it.

The director of a conservative think tank suing to see Prince Harry’s visa application said their fight is on behalf of Americans who are “sick and tired” of globalist elites like the royal “lecturing” everyone and not being held to the same standards as everyone else.

The case highlights the US’s “broken immigration system” that has a “dual standard,” according to Mike Howell, Director of the Oversight Project at Heritage Foundation, who argued Americans deserve to know if the Department of Homeland Security’s decision to let Harry, 38, live as a resident in the country was fair.

He added: “The everyday American is absolutely sick and tired of globalist elites looking down on us, dominating our cultural institutions — and no one proves that point more than Prince Harry. The American people deserve to know if their immigration laws are being applied fairly.”


Thank goodness for that .
The alternative is unthinkable …sending him back to U.K. :scream: agghhh.


He might move to Hampshire.

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It seems that everyone is doing their best to keep Prince Harry in the current news pages - which is where he needs to be to keep his main income stream going.

I wonder if all Harry’s critics and detractors realise that the best way to hurt him would be to stop talking about him.
If the media stopped reporting on everything Harry says and does, it would be a case of “out of sight, out of mind” for most folk. As Harry’s income seems to be coming from talking and writing about himself in books, interviews, speeches etc, if folk lose interest in him, his source of income will dry up.
I guess this lawsuit by Heritage is doing Harry a favour by giving the media yet another thing to keep the constant stream of press reports and media gossip about Harry going and help him stay “relevant and newsworthy”

It’s a bit of a paradox really - in his quest for more privacy, he has come to rely on staying in the news for his income now!

OK … you first … :slightly_smiling_face:

:scream: Behave!

They really should chuck him out of the US for the drugs thing if they want to show there’s not one rule for the global elite and another for the ordinary people

But yes, all this is keeping him in the limelight and in the public eye, which is what he wants to promote his brand and maintain his income

But what a boring, precious little twerp it’s showing him to be!

Grizzling because he thought the media made fun of his relationship break up?

Oh, who cares? do grow up, people go through a lot worse than that everyday

I don’t know what’s worse, the fact that Harry is a crack head or the fact he is a liar. Looks like his court case against MGM has been a failure too.

Poor Harry LOL

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Me first for what?

I’m not one of his critics and it doesn’t bother me if Harry keeps grabbing the headlines or earns shedloads of dosh from selling his stories. :wink:

Stop talking about him.

I’m not the one who keeps raising threads about him - but if the folk who raise these threads stop talking about him, so will I! :wink: :rofl:

Well, I won’t … :003: