#Open journalism No news is bad news

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support The Journal
Dublin: 8°C Friday 14 May 2021

Belgium's former king ordered to pay €5,000-a-day for failing to take paternity test

Albert II has always refused to acknowledge he may be the father of artist Delphine Boel.

Former King of the Belgians Albert II.
Former King of the Belgians Albert II.
Image: PA Images

THE FORMER KING Albert II of the Belgians has been ordered by a court to submit to a DNA test or face daily fines of €5,000 lawyers have said.

The order was the latest twist in a Belgian sculptor pursuit to prove that she is the former monarch’s daughter.

“I believe that the king will submit to this test, since he has the guarantee that it will remain confidential,” Albert’s lawyer, Guy Hiernaux, told AFP.

Another lawyer, Alain Berenboom, cautioned that the final decision remains with the monarch.

The court-ordered fine was a major development in a long battle between Albert II and Delphine Boel, who launched proceedings before a top Brussels court in 2013 to have Albert’s paternity recognised.

Boel claims she was born in 1968 after a long affair between her mother, Sibylle de Selys Longchamps and the then crown prince Albert, married since 1959 to Paola Ruffo di Calabria.

The 81-year-old former monarch, who reigned from 1993 until 2013, has always refused to acknowledge that he could be her father.

Delphine Boel at court in Brussels Delphine Boel arrives at the Palace of Justice in Brussels in 2014. Source: DPA/PA Images

Last October, the Brussels Court of Appeal ruled in favour of Boel and ordered Albert II to submit to a genetic sample in order to finally decide the matter.

Albert refused any test, which led to Thursday’s order at the appeals court in Brussels.

The ex-king must now report to an appointed forensic expert who, on the basis of a saliva sample, will carry out a comparative analysis with the DNA of Boel and her mother.

After a request made by Boel, the court said the result of the DNA test would remain secret until the end of the legal proceedings, which could last a year.

Boel “herself suggested this option in order to calm the situation and avoid a media storm”, her lawyer Marc Uyttendaele told AFP.

“I can’t imagine for a second that he (Albert II) doesn’t submit to the test,” he said.

#Open journalism No news is bad news Support The Journal

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support us now

© – AFP 2019

Seven US states have tightened their abortion laws so far this year, including high-profile cases in Alabama and Georgia. Why is this happening now – and could abortion end up being restricted across the US? Or even banned? Sinead O’Carroll, Aoife Barry and Christine Bohan look for answers in the latest episode of The Explainer, our new podcast.

Source: The Explainer/SoundCloud

About the author:


Read next:


This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel