Prince William bugging claims 'untrue'

The university that Prince William will attend in September has dashed newspaper reports about a supposed plot to bug him with listening devices.

"To the best of our knowledge, these stories are completely untrue," spokeswoman Claire Grainger of St Andrews University said.

The Express and Daily Star had reported that officers from Britain's MI5 domestic intelligence service had discovered electronic surveillance equipment during sweeps of the university town of St Andrews.

Unnamed intelligence sources were quoted as saying the equipment was set to tap into the prince's telephone calls and e-mails.

It was programmed with word recognition triggers which would be activated when the prince was using the telephone or computer. It was unclear where the devices had been found.

A Buckingham Palace spokeswoman said: "We do not comment on matters of security".

William will take a four-year art history degree at the prestigious Scottish university.

The principal of St Andrews University has warned students and staff of severe consequences if they leak stories about Prince William to the media.

Both of William's parents have fallen victim to bugging devices and suffered the embarrassment of having their most private phone conversations made public.

Heir-to-the-throne Prince Charles was taped having an intimate conversation with his mistress, Camilla Parker Bowles, while the tapes of Diana's conversations with friend James Gilbey became known as "Squidgygate".

William is currently enjoying a year off from studying after leaving Eton College, west of London, last summer.

St Andrews was founded in 1411 and is the oldest university in Scotland. The university has experienced a 44.4 per cent surge in applications since Buckingham palace announced William would attend the school.

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