Police and Westminster council have failed in a bid to ban the 65th in line to the throne from the borough after years of violence, threats, criminal damage and racist behaviour.
Rowan Nash Lascelles, 43, would simply ignore the proposed Criminal Behaviour Order and take his offending to other neighbourhoods, Deputy District Judge Olwen Davies ruled.
Lascelles, who is the son of The Hon. James Lascelles, the Queen‘s first cousin once removed, fled City of London Magistrates’ Court minutes before the hearing and a warrant was issued for his arrest.
He is addicted to powerful synthetic marijuana ‘Spice’ and mixes with the users and dealers who congregate in Westminster, particularly around The Strand, the court was told.
The great-great-grandson of George VI has multiple convictions for racially-aggravated criminal offences and was once banned from Sainsbury’s in The Strand for telling staff: ‘Go back to where you come from. I’m going to kick you out of the country. You’re not English.’
Scotland Yard had backed the application to ban him, with one officer, PC Zak Ali, telling the judge Lascelles was a ‘burden on the Metropolitan Police’.
And Westminster’s rough-sleeping co-ordinator, George Bossman, said Lascelles had ‘always ended up losing his accommodation due to his inappropriate behaviour and has now exhausted all of his options’.
Mr Bossman said: ‘It costs a lot of money to place him in a hotel, but there was constant anti-social behaviour and criminal damage. There have been frightening aggressive outbursts and racist behaviour and he has been engaging in the illicit use of substances and buying it in Westminster.’
Rowan Nash Lascelles, 65th in line to the British throne, would simply ignore the proposed Criminal Behaviour Order and take his offending to other neighbourhoods, Deputy District Judge Olwen Davies ruled
The court heard that his father, The Hon. James Lascelles, has provided him with hotel accommodation in Victoria.
Judge Davies dubbed him ‘plainly a persistent offender, who leaves misery in his wake’.
Refusing the Criminal Behaviour Order application, Judge Davies ruled: ‘An order will not deter him due to his entrenched criminality.
‘He is either unable or unwilling to change and ignores the criminal law.
‘An order excluding him from Westminster would simply be ignored. If he does not obey the law he will not obey a Criminal Behaviour Order and simply offend in other London boroughs and transfer his misery to Camden or Wandsworth.
‘I doubt Mr Lascelles gives consideration to his behaviour and it seems to be spontaneous, possibly associated with ADHD.’
Mr Bossman had told the court Lascelles ‘engages with rough sleepers, resulting in fights and he has caused a number of incidents at the drug and alcohol treatment centre in Wardour Street, Soho’.
Rowan Nash Lascelles is the son of The Hon. James Lascelles, the Queen’s first cousin once removed
He continued: ‘We have tried everything in the book to contain his behaviour, with mental health and drug and alcohol teams attempting to help him.’
‘If this behaviour continues in Westminster there could be a fatality,’ Mr Bossman added.
The court was told that the only break Westminster gets from Lascelles are his occasional trips to France, where he works at his parents’ ‘very, very big farm’.
The Criminal Behaviour Order application application was supported by Westminster’s anti-social behaviour officer Anna Hows.
Ms Hows told the court: ‘There is a history of Mr Lascelles returning to places he has once engaged with and causing harassment, alarm and distress to the people, residents and businesses.
‘He says he is not happy with the support he has been offered regarding housing and removal from the borough would give him a fresh start.
‘Westminster is the hub of rough sleeping and Spice use and it is in his best interests to be removed from the borough and for the respite of the community.’
And PC Zak Ali told the court: ‘It is quite a lengthy history when it comes to his offending pattern. We are seeking an order on behalf of the businesses and residents of Westminster to offer respite from this individual, who has convictions for anti-social acts and criminal damage.’
The officer said on August 10 police were called to a fight outside Italian restaurant Prezzo in the West End, adding: ‘One of the individuals was Mr Lascelles and he threw a bar stool, causing significant injury and was arrested for grievous bodily harm.
‘That is just one. There are others and he would commit a number of offences on the same day and be arrested numerous times in one week.
‘He is a burden on the Metropolitan Police and many violent incidents are not reported to the police, particularly from outreach services and the council.
‘He is a Spice addict and Westminster is the epicentre of Spice dealing. This order would prevent him legally from doing that.’
However, Judge Davies ruled the application could not be used as an additional punishment and would not control Lascelles.
He said: ‘My reservation is that it is not going to stop him coming back to Westminster. He is not going to be deterred.’
Lascelles was also due to be sentenced for an offence of criminal damage after pleading guilty to vandalising a door on April 27 at Look Ahead Housing & Care in Vauxhall Bridge Road, Victoria and this will be dealt with when he is arrested.