UK charity watchdog launches review of Prince Harry, Meghan Markle's Sussex Royal, rift with Kate Middleton set to be confirmed

The UK Charity Commission has launched a review of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's former philanthropic organisation, examining whether it complied with charity law.

According to a report from the Daily Telegraph on Saturday, sources say the charity watchdog wants to know how Sussex Royal was run and whether all of its operations were legitimate before the couple shut it down when they ditched their royal duties last year.

The 'regulatory and compliance case' is not considered a formal investigation as the commission is yet to determine whether there has been any wrongdoing.

Sussex Royal was founded in 2019 after Harry and Meghan decided to break away from The Royal Foundation, a charity they previously ran with Prince William and Kate Middleton.

The Royal Foundation and Sussex Royal were also looked into by the commission last year after complaints about grants to the Sussexes' former charity. However, it deemed the grants to be appropriate.

News of the charity review comes just days ahead of the royal renegades' no-holds-barred interview with Oprah Winfrey, set to air across the world on Monday night (NZT). 

British media outlets on Saturday reported that the Queen has not been given an advance copy of the television show, but the monarch and senior royals are willing to "reserve judgement" until it has been broadcast. If they believe it necessary, the royals may make a public response. 

Teasers for the interview have hinted there will be several bombshell revelations. In one trailer, Meghan accuses Buckingham Palace of spreading lies about her and Harry.

This week it emerged that a complaint had been filed in 2018 against Meghan by her former communications secretary. It claims that the Duchess drove two assistants out of the household and undermined the confidence of a third. The Times was told Meghan was critical of other staffers, leaving some "humiliated" and "shaking with fear". 

Buckingham Palace quickly responded to the reports, with its HR team launching an investigation into the allegations. A spokesperson for Meghan called the report a "smear campaign" and said it was "no coincidence" it came out just before the Oprah Winfrey interview.

According to a Saturday report from the Daily Mail, Meghan believes these allegations show why she and Harry had to part ways with the royal family. 

"Meghan said not once did anyone from the Palace come to her defense when she was being shredded by the tabloids, but now all of a sudden it's okay for those same people to talk to the media," a source said.

"She said it's a double standard and not in a million years would Kate ever be treated this way. Meghan said she was singled out from day one."

The Telegraph also reported that the Duchess is expected to confirm a rift with Kate during the Oprah interview. One insider said that there will be "a lot of discussion about how Meghan felt unsupported, including by Kate".