Police investigate video after Windsor Castle security breach | UK news

Police are investigating a video linked to a man who was arrested at Windsor Castle while in possession of a crossbow.

The video, obtained by the Sun, appears to show a masked figure in a dark hoodie holding a crossbow and addressing the camera with a distorted voice, saying they wanted to “assassinate the Queen” in a “revenge” mission.

It comes after a 19-year-old man was arrested on Christmas Day within the grounds of the castle in Berkshire where the Queen is in residence.

The man, from Southampton, was arrested on suspicion of breach or trespass of a protected site and possession of an offensive weapon. Police said he has since been sectioned under the Mental Health Act and remains in the care of medical professionals.

The investigation has been transferred from Thames Valley police, the local force covering the royal residence, to Scotland Yard’s royalty protection command.

The royal family were told of the break-in, with officials saying there was no danger to the royals and that security protections had worked as the suspect was spotted and quickly detained at about 8.30am.

A spokesperson from Scotland Yard said: “Security processes were triggered within moments of the man entering the grounds and he did not enter any buildings. Following a search of the man, a crossbow was recovered.”

They added: “Inquiries into the full circumstances of this incident are being progressed by Metropolitan Police specialist operations.”

The Met would not comment on who appeared in the video, but a spokesperson said in a statement: “Following the man’s arrest, detectives are assessing the contents of a video.”

It is believed the Queen, 95, and Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla, were at the castle on Christmas Day. Other royals joined later that day, with the Queen having decided to scale back celebrations because of the Covid pandemic.

As well as armed police patrols, the perimeter is covered by CCTV and other security measures. In the past, the castle has been the scene of security blunders as well as terrorist intentions to attack it.

Mohiussunnath Chowdhury, later jailed for life for a terrorist attack plot, intended to stage an attack on or outside the castle in 2017. The Uber driver tried to use his satnav to get there, but managed to go to a pub called Windsor Castle instead. He later stood trial for a sword attack outside Buckingham Palace, for which he was acquitted in 2018.

In 2020 Chowdhury was convicted of another terrorist plot and jailed for life.

Perhaps the most embarrassing security breach was in 2002 when the comedian Aaron Barschak gatecrashed Prince William’s 21st birthday party.

Barschak scaled an embankment to get into the castle, climbed two trees, clambered on to a wall and dropped down the other side. He triggered several alarms but no police response.

He got into the event where William was celebrating, interrupted his speech and claimed to have given the prince a kiss on both cheeks, declared “we all love you”, and left to rapturous applause from royal revellers.

A review into that incident identified a litany of failings and led to a tightening of security.

The review also recommended a new offence of trespass into royal or government premises, under which the 19-year-old was arrested on Saturday.

* PA Media contributed to this report