Robert Brown, who believes he is the illegitimate son of Queen's sister, given permission to seek judicial review
A man who claims he may be the illegitimate son of the late Princess Margaret has won a high court ruling that could advance his efforts to see the contents of the wills of the Queen's sister and mother. Robert Brown, 58, an accountant from Jersey, is seeking to prove that Princess Margaret hid a pregnancy in 1955 and that he is her secret child. The royal wills were drawn up around the time of Margaret's death in 2002 and sealed to keep their contents secret.
Brown has been granted permission to seek judicial review of refusal to allow him access under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to documents he says show there was a secret judicial process for sealing royal wills.
Mr Justice Phillips, sitting at the high court in London, said there were compelling constitutional reasons to allow Brown's legal challenge to go ahead – and that was not altered by a previous court of appeal observation that Brown's claim was "scandalous and irrational".
The judge said the case gave rise to important points of principle and practice for open justice and the public interest. They related to how the courts dealt with statutory provisions and rules "in relation to a particular class of litigant".
Brown said: "I am delighted that the points I have raised have been recognised as arguable." Of his claim to royal parentage, he said: "Hopefully I am not a nutcase. I am either right or I am wrong."