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September 29, 2002
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The Princess Royal and her husband Commodore Tim Laurence have been summonsed to appear before East Berkshire magistrates next week to face charges stemming from an alleged attack by one of her dogs, Buckingham Palace confirmed on Sunday.

Princess Anne and her husband were charged under the Dangerous Dogs Act after one of their canines – thought to be one of the family’s three English bull terriers – was accused of biting a couple walking in Windsor Great Park last July. It has been alleged that the royals were exercising the dog when the animal, running off its lead, attacked a man and a woman. Neither of the two, who alerted police in Windsor, was said to be seriously injured.

The royal couple could each be fined up to £5,000 and may also face being sent to prison for six months.

The upcoming court date will mark the first time a member of the Royal Family has been summonsed to appear before a criminal court for an offence other than speeding. It is said to be unlikely that 52-year-old Anne or her husband will attend the October hearing in person.

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It has been alleged that Princess Anne and her husband were exercising the dog in Windsor Great Park when it attacked a man and a woman