Been wondering about the breakdown for the April 29 royal wedding breakfast at Buckingham Palace? Wonder no more.
Of the 650 guests going to the breakfast (which isn’t actually taking place at breakfast time, but post-wedding), Prince William and Kate Middleton have invited 250 people, 50 people are courtesy of the Queen, 100 more from the Middletons, and the remaining 250 come from Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall. And it is that last group which contains some — how can we put this — rather colorful figures.
(More on TIME.com: See pictures of Kate Middleton)
The Mail on Sunday has done some digging and uncovered that Prince Charles couldn’t give a hoot about quiet backstories when it comes to some of his selections. To wit: a German playboy-turned-art collector whose uncle was an SS officer, a U.S. financier whose bank was fined over a scandal involving Chilean dictator General Pinochet, a Transylvanian count and a Florentine noble whose wine-making firm has been accused of faking wine labels. And that’s just the surnames A-C (we kid, we kid).
But Charles isn’t joking with his precious invites, if we take the Mail at their word (it should be pointed out that we’ll only know for sure on the day itself) but, if confirmed, they’ll have surely raised the odd eyebrow at Royal HQ. Juergen Pierburg, for example, is the former playboy son of a Nazi-era industrialist who helped out the German war effort. His father Alfred was appointed a Wehrwirtschaftsführer (“war industry leader”) and even had his oath of office administered by Adolf Hitler himself. And Alfred’s younger brother, SS Colonel Kurt Pierburg, was sentenced to 25 years in jail after the war. Any way you look at it, that’s one hell of an ice-breaker.
(More on TIME.com: See pictures of the rise of Hitler)
And what of American banker Joe Allbritton, the former owner of Riggs bank, which once called itself the “bank of presidents”? That moniker was dropped in light of the firm being fined many millions of dollars after Congress investigated a money-laundering scheme allegedly involving Saudi diplomats and South America dictators. (Allbritton has always denied any wrongdoing)
We could go on, were it not for the moment of epiphany that has just struck: compared to these individuals, NewsFeed’s bill of health is relatively clean and our closets pretty much cleaned of any skeletons. And so we’re off to make one more plea to Prince Charles to let us in, as every wedding breakfast needs a guest able to pontificate about the truly pressing matters of the day: Charlie Sheen’s live tour, the Dancing with the Stars recap and Lindsay Lohan’s continuing descent (in fact, how did she not bag an invite?)