Prince Vittorio Emanuele of Savoy, son of the last Italian king and heir to the defunct Italian throne, has died in Geneva.
A statement from the House of Savoy confirmed that the Prince of Naples had died on Saturday, February 3 at 7:05 a.m. at the age of 86.
He was the son of Italy’s last king, Umberto II, who went into exile after the country voted to become a republic in 1946.
However, despite the results of the referendum, the House of Savoy always maintained its claim to the throne and cited the Spanish example to prove its case.
Spain restored its monarchy in 1975 when the nation returned to democracy following the death of General Franco.
Prince Vittorio Emanuele of Savoy, son of the last king of Italy, has died in Geneva at the age of 86
After the House of Savoy fled Italy when he was only nine years old, Prince Vittorio Emanuele spent most of his life in exile in Switzerland and Portugal.
He then married Marina Ricolfi Doria and the couple had a son, Emanuele Philibert.
After struggling for decades, the Prince of Naples finally returned to Italian soil in 2002 after parliament lifted a clause in the Italian Constitution that prohibited his family from setting foot in the nation.
During his visit he held an audience with Pope John Paul II, but found a cold reception from the Italian people.
Prince Victor Emmanuel of Savoy, flanked by Princess Marina of Savoy and her son Emmanuel Filibert of Savoy.
The exiled prince grew up between Switzerland and Portugal after his family fled Italy in 1946 when it became a republic.
The heir to the late throne was no stranger to controversy during his life, after also being arrested in connection with the death of a German teenager in 1978.
Dirk Hamer was 19 years old and sleeping on a boat in a port in Corsica when he was shot in the right leg. He died three months later.
At that time, the Italian prince was also in the port, arguing with a group of tourists whom he accused of stealing his inflatable boat.
More than a decade later, Vittorio Emanuele was arrested in France in connection with the murder, but was acquitted in a Paris court in 1991. He was given a suspended sentence for possession of a rifle.
However, the plot thickened 20 years later when a recording emerged of the exiled king appearing to admit to killing Hamer.
The recording was filmed in Potenza prison, where he was detained before a trial for extortion and participation in prostitution (of which he was acquitted).
During the 2006 recording, he is seen telling other inmates that he had mocked the court after his acquittal.
In the video, he describes how he fired two shots that hit the tourist while he was sleeping on his boat off Cavallo Island in 1978.
Princess Caroline of Monaco’s daughter-in-law opened up in a rare interview about how she told the story of an Italian prince she “confessed to murdering.” In the photo Pierre Casiraghi and Beatriz Borromeo.
Dirk Hamer, 19, was shot twice in the right leg and died in hospital three months later. His family (pictured) have fought to have the royal arrested.
After the clip surfaced, he dismissed it as “manipulated” and “fake.”
In the clip, as reported by IndependentThe exiled prince said: ‘I was wrong… I was wrong.
‘I have to say that I took them for a walk… the prosecutor had asked for five years and six months. He was sure to win.
‘They gave me a six-month suspended sentence (for weapons possession); Six months later there was an amnesty, they didn’t even record (the sentence). I’m going out!’
However, Hamer’s family renewed their calls for the exiled prince to face justice following the release of the recording.
The mystery surrounding Hamer’s death became a central point of the Netflix documentary The King Who Never Was.
The documentary was directed by journalist Beatrice Borromeo, daughter-in-law of Princess Carolina of Monaco.
It was later revealed that Beatrice, who also modeled for Vogue, was the person who leaked the recording.
Speaking to Tatler last year about the story, Beatrice said: “for as long as I can remember… the story of this case was part of our lives”, adding that Hamer’s mother Birgit is her own best friend. mother.