Prince Harry should have thought twice about spilling the tea on his drug use — because it might come back to bite him!
After getting candid about experimenting with marijuana, cocaine, and psychedelic mushrooms in his memoir Spare (not to mention during the book’s lengthy press tour), conservatives are accusing the Duke of Sussex of potentially lying on his US visa application!
And if true, some legal experts think it might be grounds for the government to deport Harry from the country! Yiiikes!
Here’s the deal. A Washington, DC-based think tank known as the Heritage Foundation is now behind a growing campaign requesting Harry’s visa application be made public so American taxpayers can understand whether the 38-year-old declared drug use on his visa. So, they’re fighting to see any emails, texts, WhatsApps, or other correspondence related to Harry’s visa (as well as the actual application) to ensure the case was handled properly. Mike Howell, director of the Heritage Oversight Project said in a statement via DailyMail.com:
“This widespread media interest in Prince [Harry]’s drug abuse inevitably raises possible questions regarding his application for residency in the United States. Public confidence in the government would undoubtedly suffer if DHS, CBP, and USCIS failed to properly vet such a high-profile case. Moreover, if Prince Harry was granted preferential treatment that too would undermine public confidence in DHS, CPB, and USCIS’s application of equal justice under the law.”
Wow. They’re taking this seriously!
While it’s never been clear what visa the royal filled out when he moved to the States with his wife Meghan Markle in 2020, the most common paperwork is known as the ESTA application. It’s given to most UK tourists and does include one very important question:
“Have you ever violated any law related to possessing, using or distributing illegal drugs?”
Obviously, Prince Haz has been VERY forthcoming about his drug use in recent months, but until the memoir’s release, he’d previously been very tight-lipped about rumors of his history with substances. So, if he didn’t tell the truth, he could be facing serious penalties, such as deportation and being barred from applying for citizenship. On the other hand, if he told the truth and was still allowed in, some of his haters would be upset that he received special treatment.
Former federal prosecutor Neama Rahmani told Page Six on Tuesday night:
“An admission of drug use is usually grounds for inadmissibility. That means Prince Harry’s visa should have been denied or revoked because he admitted to using cocaine, mushrooms, and other drugs.”
And in the professional’s opinion, there is “no exception for royalty or recreational use.” He seems to be suggesting Harry may have lied…
That said, not everyone thinks this is a big deal. Immigration lawyer Sam Adair told the outlet it is “unlikely that these admissions will present a problem” since Harry has no criminal history. Also, attorney James Leonard doesn’t think revealing in a memoir that “you experimented with drugs when you were a young man” is enough to warrant an investigation into his visa. He explained:
“Immigration is not going to do anything based on that. If he got arrested or if he got a DWI, then we’re having a different conversation.”
Similarly, there’s a chance the Invictus Games founder never filled out the ESTA application, which would have required him to divulge his substance usage. He might have obtained an O-1 visa, which is given to people with “extraordinary ability,” such as Justin Bieber and Hugh Jackman. This legal document lasts for three years, meaning King Charles III‘s youngest son would be due for renewal within weeks. Even with Harry’s latest admission, Adair doesn’t think he’ll have a problem staying in Cali:
“It isn’t clear to me what the duke’s visa status is in the US, but breaking the law could be an issue in getting a visa renewed or for readmission to the US. But recreational drug use that has not been the subject of criminal scrutiny is unlikely to present an issue for someone’s visa status.”
The US State Department doesn’t seem concerned about the controversy, either, as they said in a response to DM:
“Visa records are confidential under Section 222(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA); therefore, we cannot discuss the details of individual visa cases.”
It doesn’t sound like the conservatives are getting very far in this battle. But damn. This has gotta stink for Harry. First, he gets practically exiled from the UK and now his new home is at risk, too! Thoughts? Do YOU think Harry’s application should be questioned??