MEGHAN Markle and Prince Harry’s security costs are “spiralling out of control” with Whitehall in fierce negotiations over the couples future.
The bill for the Duke and Duchess of Sussexs protection team currently stands at about 600,000 a year, and is picked up by the taxpayer.
Now senior police are worried the couples demand to be seen as internationally protected people could see the royal bodyguard budget soar even further.
A former Scotland Yard chief has now accused the couple of not understanding the seriousness of what they were demanding.
The cop boss said they have not thought out the security implications of their move and have put the Met in an impossible situation.
Scotland Yard is already facing an uphill battle to train enough specialist officers to cope with royal family security.
A report last year revealed the Met has found it extremely difficult to obtain the necessary training courses to increase officer numbers, leading to a reliance on overtime.
Staying in Canada over Christmas, Harry and Meghan were accompanied by six armed Met officers at all times.
However, given the 24/7 nature of security this meant ten officers were needed with replacements flown out throughout.
Costs also soared in South Africa, where a fleet of armoured Land Rover Discoverys was shipped to because sufficient secure vehicles could not be sourced locally.
The cost of flights for protection officers rose from 3.47 million in 2016-17 to 4.62 million in 2018-19.
Hotel stays increased from 1.12 million in 2016-17 to more than 2 million in 2017-18.
Anti-monarchy group Republic estimates the cost of royal security to the taxpayer at a massive 106 million per year.
It comes as the Prime Minister backed the Queen to “sort” the row.