- Prince William honored his former aide Jason Knauf for services rendered to the royal family on Wednesday.
- Knauf previously worked for William and Kate’s charity and for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.
- In 2021, Knauf was reported to have accused Meghan of bullying palace staff members in 2018.
The Prince of Wales bestowed a prestigious honor on the royal aide who once accused the Duchess of Sussex of bullying.
Jason Knauf, the former chief executive of Prince William and Kate Middleton’s charitable trust, was made a lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order at an investiture ceremony on Wednesday at Windsor Castle.
Knauf was included in King Charles’s first New Year’s Honors List in December 2022, as People reported at the time. But William was the one who bestowed the honor on the royal attendant, presenting him with a medal at Wednesday’s ceremony, according to photos posted by Mirror show.
The Royal Victorian Order was created by Queen Victoria in 1896 and is awarded by the reigning monarch to reward individuals for their service to the royal family, according to the Cabinet Office websitea department of the UK Government.
Knauf was chief executive of the Prince and Princess of Wales Royal Foundation from 2019 to January 2022. Insider previously reported. Before that, he was communications secretary to William and Kate, Prince Harry, and also to Meghan Markle when she joined the family in 2018.
Knauf’s breakup with Meghan was made public shortly before the Sussexes’ interview with Oprah Winfrey aired in March 2021.
Days before the interview aired, Buckingham Palace announced that investigate claims that Meghan harassed some staff after The London Times reported that Knauf had filed a complaint about Meghan with the palace’s human resources department in October 2018.
A spokesman for the The Duke and Duchess of Sussex denied the claims. at the time, calling it a “calculated smear campaign based on misleading and damaging information” in a statement issued to The Times.
“The Duchess is saddened by this latest attack on her character, particularly as someone who has been the target of bullying, and is deeply committed to supporting those who have experienced pain and trauma,” the spokesperson said at the time. “She is determined to continue her work of generating compassion throughout the world and she will continue to strive to set an example of doing what is right and doing what is good.”
In June 2022, the palace said would not publish the results of the investigation in the bullying allegations to protect the privacy of all involved.
Besides, Knauf was involved in Meghan’s lawsuit against Associated Newspapers. In 2020, the Duchess sued the company for misuse of private information, copyright infringement and breach of the Data Protection Act 2008 after Mail on Sunday, part of the Associated Newspapers group. published excerpts from a private letter which she wrote to her estranged father, Thomas Markle, in 2018.
Knauf’s witness statement included a text from Meghan saying she knew the letter could be leaked and asking her for advice on its contents, as shown in screenshots of a text exchange between Meghan and Knauf made public as part of the judicial battle, published by the online mail. Associated Newspapers used the texts as evidence to support its argument that Meghan expected the letter to be made public, as Insider previously reported.
In January 2022, Meghan won the lawsuit and received £1 from the Mail on Sunday.
William has never publicly commented on the bullying claims against Meghan or Knauf’s involvement in the Associated Newspapers lawsuit. However, Harry wrote in his memoir, “Spare”, that his sister had a negative opinion of Meghan, as he referred to her as “difficult”, “rude” and “abrasive” during a meeting. Discussion between the brothers in 2019.
Representatives for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, the Prince of Wales and Buckingham Palace did not respond to Insider’s request for comment.