PreviousNext

'In Spain, there are two Queens': Calls for King Juan Carlos, 74, to abdicate over rumours he was on controversial elephant-hunt with 47-year-old lover

By // News | 'In Spain, there are two Queens': Calls for King Juan Carlos, 74, to abdicate over rumours he was on controversial elephant-hunt with 47-year-old lover
Email to a friend Plain text Print version // Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font

By Lee Moran

PUBLISHED: 04:30 EST, 19 April 2012 | UPDATED: 04:54 EST, 19 April 2012

Calls are growing for the King of Spain to abdicate following his controversial African elephant hunt - and further claims he was on it with a lover almost 30 years his junior.

The Italian press is reporting that Juan Carlos, 74, was in Botswana with 46-year-old glamorous German princess Corrine zu Sayn-Wittgenstein.

La Stampa newspaper went as far to say that 'in Spain, there are two Queens' - in reference to rumours the monarch has been 'sentimentally linked' to Corrine for 'several years'.

Claims: The Italian press says King Juan Carlos (left) was on the trip with his 'lover' Corinne Larsen (right)

Under fire: Spanish King Juan Carlos (right), pictured during a previous elephant hunting trip in Africa, has come in for criticism

Under fire: Spanish King Juan Carlos (right), pictured during a previous elephant hunting trip in Africa, has come in for criticism

The article alleged the pair, who reportedly first met in 2006 at a banquet in his honour in her southern German town of Ditzingen, have been on several foreign trips together.

It said they later met again during the America's Cup sailing competition in Mallorca  - and the mother-of-two has even represented him on some outings.

Corinne, whose maiden name is Larson and who is believed to have organised the hunting trip, is said to have first married Philip Atkins, with whom she had a daughter called Nastassia in 1992.

She later 'became a blue blood', the newspaper said, thanks to her second wedding in 2000 to German Prince Casimir zu Sayn-Wittgenstein, whom she later divorced.

Anger: Juan Carlos (left, on a previous trip) has been slammed for his upper-class pursuit as his country goes through the economic doldrums

Anger: Juan Carlos (left, on a previous trip) has been slammed for his upper-class pursuit as his country goes through the economic doldrums

Distant: Prince Charles stares into the distance in this 1986 photograph showing him, Diana and the young Princes William and Harry with Queen Sofia and King Carlos of Spain

Distant: Prince Charles stares into the distance in this 1986 photograph showing him, Diana and the young Princes William and Harry with Queen Sofia and King Carlos of Spain

The Spanish press, often reluctant to criticise the monarch who relinquished his powers to ensure a successful transition to democracy following the death of dictator Francisco Franco in the late 1970s, is remaining quiet on the rumours.

But they have been published on several Italian and South American websites. It has led to Twitter users and blogs to say it is time for him to hand over power to his son Prince Felipe.

It is not the first time claims have surfaced that Juan Carlos is a real-life Don Juan.

Just two months ago an explosive book, by Barcelona-based author Pilar Eyre, claimed he was a 'serial womaniser' who had bedded more than 1,500 women.

Farewell: Spain's King Juan Carlos pictured leaving from the Madrid hospital

Farewell: Spain's King Juan Carlos pictured leaving from the Madrid hospital yesterday

The Solitude of the Queen labelled him a 'professional seducer' who once tried to seduce Princess Diana and who has had numerous affairs and has not shared a bed with his wife Queen Sofia for the past 35 years.

She even claimed the queen stumbled upon her husband with one of his alleged  lovers, the Spanish film star Sara Montiel, at a friend’s country house in Toledo in 1976.

The claims cap off a bad week for the Spanish monarch.

Yesterday he apologised for going elephant-hunting in Africa while everyday people in his country endure a severe economic crisis.

In an unprecedented act of royal contrition, he said on leaving a Madrid hospital where he underwent surgery after breaking his hip in a fall on the trip: 'I am very sorry. I made a mistake. It won't happen again.'

He is also facing calls to be stripped of his honorary presidency of the Spanish branch of the World Wildlife Fund.

Juan Carlos del Olmo, the secretary general of WWF Espana, said the king's position as patron had become untenable.

The trip only came to light when the king fell and had to be rushed back to Spain on Friday.

Newspaper reports suggest Mohamed Eyad Kayali, a Syrian-born Saudi business man and right-hand man of Saudi's defence minister Prince Salman, was also on the trip.

Kayali is said to be a key figure in securing a Spanish consortium the €6.7billion contract to build a high-speed rail link between Mecca and Medina.

Unlucky: The Spanish King was on trip hunting elephants in Botswana when he fell after returning to his bedroom in a lodge

Unlucky: The Spanish King was on trip hunting elephants in Botswana when he fell after returning to his bedroom in a lodge

Many Spaniards were dumbfounded that the king could make such an opulent journey while everyday people brave a 23 per cent unemployment rate, a shrinking economy and fears the country will be the next after Greece, Ireland and Portugal to need a bailout.

For many, the trip made the king's recent comments about how he could not sleep at night thinking about the country's unemployed ring hollow.

News of the safari caused an uproar so loud it eclipsed Spain's economic crisis for a few days. Members of most political parties had urged the king to say he was sorry.

The palace official confirmed the apology was unprecedented in the history of Spain's monarchy. The royal family has been in the news a lot lately - and not for the best reasons.

The king's son-in-law Inaki Urdangarin is a suspect in a corruption case, accused of using his position to embezzle several million euros in public contracts through a not-for-profit foundation.

Then, over Easter, the king's 13-year-old grandson shot himself in the foot with a shotgun, even though by law in Spain you must be 14 to handle a gun.

Until now, Juan Carlos had always been a highly respected figure in Spain and almost never came in for criticism from either politicians or the media.

The king rarely speaks out on current affairs in Spain.

But with the royal family looking so bad because of the Urdangarin case, in his traditional Christmas address last year, the king made a point of saying 'everyone is equal in the eyes of the law'.

He said he was worried because of what he called growing mistrust of 'some of our institutions'.

Tagged : No tags for this article

Headlines Newsview all

Ebola could hit 15 countries across Africa: Study of how disease has spread in past finds 70million people may be at risk of infection

The Ebola outbreak could hit 15 countries across Africa - putting the lives of 70 million people at risk, a groundbreaking study has found. In a ...

economic ties with China as two countries announce £2.4bn in new commercial deals

Britain is to forge closer economic ties with China after Chancellor George Osborne announced £2.4billion in new commercial deals with the People’s Republic. As the annual ...

Manchester Dogs Home: Public raise over £200,000 in hours after dogs home fire

Donations have poured in for Manchester Dogs’ Home after a fire ripped through the premises, killing more than 53 dogs last night. A JustGiving page set ...

Manchester Dogs' Home: 15-year-old questioned on suspicion of arson attack after blaze kills 40 dogs

A 15-year-old boy is being questioned on suspicion of arson after a blaze at Manchester Dogs' Home which killed more than 40 dogs. Firefighters were called ...

Oscar Pistorius braced for verdict in Reeva Steenkamp murder trial

The judge in the Oscar Pistorius murder trial has started delivering her long-awaited verdict in a case that has gripped the world - a decision ...

Airline passenger was accidentally given suitcase full of plastic EXPLOSIVES left at Sydney airport by the AFP a month ago... then took them home 

A woman got more than what she bargained for when she was given a replacement suitcase at Sydney airport after her luggage was damaged on ...

I'm convinced Oscar Pistorius is innocent, says journalist to have spent time with the time athlete during his murder trial

Mark Williams-Thomas believes athlete shot Reeva Steenkamp by mistake Reporter says he has spoken to Paralympian and his family in 'real detail' He says double-amputee is a ...

Royal baby hoax hospital staff wanted to discipline nurse Jacintha Saldanha

An Australian DJ has made a face-to-face apology to the family of a nurse who killed herself after she put her through to the Duchess of ... Full story

Trainee teacher hangs himself after split from the girlfriend he couldn’t live without

A trainee teacher hanged himself on New Year’s Eve after a split from his girlfriend, an inquest heard today. Keiran Walsh, 22, split from his partner ... Full story

White Dee, Benefits Street's most infamous and shameless resident

Late on a dark and rainy night, it is all go-go-go down at White Dee’s house in Birmingham. There is a pan of fish stew ... Full story

DJ Chris Moyles claimed to be a second-hand CAR DEALER to save £1 million in celebrity tax avoidance scheme

DJ Chris Moyles claimed to be a second-hand car dealer while presenting Radio 1’s Breakfast Show in a bid to save up to £1million in ... Full story

Comment on: 'In Spain, there are two Queens': Calls for King Juan Carlos, 74, to abdicate over rumours he was on controversial elephant-hunt with 47-year-old lover

Rate this article

1.00

Breaking News

British Imams take to YouTube to warn Isis terrorists that kidnap and threatened murder of British taxi driver Alan Henning is against Sharia Law 

Muslim scholars call for release of kidnapped Alan Henning in YouTube pleaDescribe threats to murder taxi driver as 'totally prohibited' under Sharia lawThe 47-year-old appeared ...

So much for a dry weekend! Brits trapped in cars and underground after more flash flooding overnight ... but d forecasters STILL say it will clear up

Drivers in Essex had to be rescued from their cars as sudden torrential downpour flooded area last night Three men and a woman were trapped in ...

George the cockatoo found safe and sound after he was birdnapped from a Sydney pub that he's called home for almost 10 years

George the cockatoo was taken away by a brazen thief at a Sydney hotelThe brazen thief dropped by the pub and was 'friending' him ...

Gang who stole £200,000 Audis to strip for parts jailed after their sophisticated car cutting den was raided by police

Akhtar Zamir, Khuram Razaq and Nakash Javaid took four cars in five daysMechanics Thomas Winkett and Wayne Williams dismantled them for partsThey took two Audi ...

Glasgow 'riots': Footage shows Yes and No voters in running street battles in disorder after pro-Union rally

Footage has emerged of violent scenes in Glasgow as police struggled to contain a pro-Union rally that broke down into disorder in the city centre ...

UK weather: Thunder, lightning and flash floods hit south of England

The driest September in over 50 years came to an abrupt end this weekend, as thundery storms saw parts of Britain waking up to flash ...

Record-high auction rates soar and property prices rise as Sydney home sells for $2.3 million on a huge day of Spring sales

This house in Sydney's north sold before Auction for $2.3 million The property opened for inspection and was snapped up immediatelyIt was $300,000 above the price the ...

We cant turn away from these hideous acts Foreign Minister Julie Bishop tells UNs security council that taking action against IS terrorists is now a matter of conscience

Foreign ministers attend a U.N Security Council session in New York to discuss action against IS terrorists Julie Bishop said the 'murderous terrorist organisation' is a ...

Giant scary robot monster bird to protect Sydney Opera House from marauding seagulls

In a bid to keep gulls from scavenging, management is currently trialling a giant mechanical birdThe giant mechanical bird is reported at a cost of ...

UK Imams call on 'immediate and unconditional' release of Alan Henning from hands of Isis

Three prominent Muslim Imams and Islamic scholars have made an impassioned video appeal to the Islamic State (Isis) calling on the immediate and unconditional release ...