The news that at least 50 people – and who knows how many more – were plotting to overthrow democracy in Germanyto invade the Bundestag and restore the Second Reich sent shivers down the spines of the world as the specter of far-right extremism took on a face.
A central figure in this organization that had adopted the name “Citizens of the Reich” is a 70-year-old man with white hair, blue eyes, stylish thin-framed glasses and a plaid woolen jacket – the same in both the arrest photos and portraits he was trafficking.
He is a real estate agent from Frankfurt who introduces himself as Prince Heinrich XIII, he is married to Iranian Susan Doukt Jalaliwho in turn introduces herself as Princess Susan and they have a son born in 1991 named Heinrich II.
The princess is a certified alternative therapist who for many years maintained a private practice in Frankfurt. She practices acupuncture, bioresonance therapy or scar removal and makes natural cosmetics.
Heinrich of the conspiratorial, extremist organization planning an armed invasion of the Bundestag he is not by any stretch of the imagination a princeas many reasonably thought. But he is a prince without a title.
The House of Royce was founded in the 12th century and it had the particularity of its head to name each of the sons he had Heinrich (Henry). It is a tribute to Henry VI of the Holy Roman Empire, a member of the House of Hohenstaufen.
And since the male descendants of each prince may have been many, the system is followed that each receives a number from 1 to 100 and then resets the counter to zero and starts counting again.
The House of Royce, untitled from 1918
All this numbering matters as little as any authority of the Royces ended in 1918 with the collapse of the German Empire and the advent of the Republic.
Heinrich’s great-grandfather – Heinrich XIII – was forced to relinquish his titles as the lands of Reuss were absorbed into the modern German state of Thuringia after World War I.
But the descendants of the Royce family retained much of their wealth, including a series of castles and palaces.
One such castle – a Neo-Gothic house in Saaldorf on land that belonged to the House of Reuss – is the personal property of Henry XIII. The German authorities’ investigation concluded that the castle was used to host many meetings of the Reichsbürger, “Citizens of the Reich” organization, during which members they were planning the coup against the German government.
According to German news agency MDR, one of the properties he owns and was raided by police is used as his business address for companies in his name that functioned as a shell to finance the organization’s activities.
The speech in Zurich – “Under the rule of my ancestors people lived happy lives”
In 2019, the Prince delivered a keynote address at a Worldwebforum event in Zurich. There for 15 minutes he expressed his argument against the abolition of the German monarchy and the annihilation of his family’s influence and privileges.
Heinrich, in his speech, had recounted how his great-grandfather was forced to give up his title and privileges when Germany became a republic. As a genuine monarchist nostalgic who would have every interest in its restoration, he had said that people living under the rule of his ancestors “lived happy lives because the administrative structures were simple and transparent”.
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