- Title: Court orders Belgian ex-king to take paternity test
- Date: 5th November 2018
- Summary: GHENT, BELGIUM (FILE - JULY 17, 2013) (REUTERS) THEN-KING OF THE BELGIANS, ALBERT II, WAVING AT CROWD ALBERT II AND THEN-QUEEN OF THE BELGIANS, PAOLA, WALKING ALONGSIDE LOCAL OFFICIALS ALBERT II AND PAOLA WAVING FROM BALCONY CROWD HOLDING BELGIAN FLAGS, CHEERING AND TAKING PHOTOS PUBLIC GREETING ALBERT II AND PAOLA BRUSSELS, BELGIUM (FILE - JULY 21, 2013) (REUTERS) FORMER BELGIAN KING AND QUEEN ALBERT II AND PAOLA JOINING NEW KING PHILIPPE AND QUEEN MATHILDE ON BALCONY, ROYAL COUPLES WAVING AT CROWDS BRUSSELS, BELGIUM (FILE - FEBRUARY 21, 2017) (REUTERS) PHOTOGRAPHERS TAKING PICTURES OF BELGIAN ARTIST, DELPHINE BOEL, WALKING IN STREET BOEL WALKING WITH ONE OF HER LAWYERS, ALAIN DE JONGE BOEL, LAWYERS WALKING AWAY UNDER POLICE ESCORT ENTRANCE TO BRUSSELS' CIVIL COURTHOUSE SIGN FOR COURTHOUSE VARIOUS OF BOEL AND HER LAWYERS, MARC UYTTENDAELE AND YVES-HENRI LELEUX, STANDING OUTSIDE COURTROOM AFTER COURT HEARING
- Embargoed: 19th November 2018 15:15
- Keywords: Albert II Former Belgian king Paternity Test Court Delphine Boel Royal family DNA
- Location: BRUSSELS AND GHENT, BELGIUM
- City: BRUSSELS AND GHENT, BELGIUM
- Country: Belgium
- Topics: Arts / Culture / Entertainment,Royals
- Reuters ID: LVA001958BX3B
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:The Brussels appeals court has ordered the retired king of Belgium to take a DNA paternity test, overturning an earlier ruling in a suit brought by 50-year-old artist Delphine Boel.
Under the judgement, reported by Boel's lawyers on Monday (November 5), King Albert II must take the test within three months or risk being presumed to be her father - although his lawyers could seek to challenge the court's legal argument.
The 84-year-old monarch, who in 2013 abdicated in favour of his son Philippe after 20 years on the throne, has contested Boel's claim for more than a decade. Court-ordered DNA tests have proved that she is not the daughter of Jacques Boel, scion of one of Belgium's richest industrial dynasties.
The court could not be reached, and there was no immediate comment from the royal house. Boel's lawyers said in their statement that they were pleased with the "strong affirmation of the principle of acting in the interests of the child" as she seeks legal confirmation of her true identity.
That identity became a topic of public debate after the publication in 1999 of a biography of Queen Paola, Albert's Italian wife, which alleged that he had had a long extra-marital relationship from which a daughter was born in the 1960s.
Albert, who has no formal public role, has acknowledged that he and Paola had marital difficulties. Their three children are all older than Boel. Next in line to the throne is 17-year-old Princess Elisabeth, daughter of Philippe and Queen Mathilde.
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