Princess Charlene tried "to flee three times" before Monaco wedding, says reports

Princess Charlene of Monaco arrives for her religious wedding with Prince Albert II of Monaco at the Prince's Palace on July 2, 2011 in Monaco. AFP PHOTO / DAMIEN MEYER (Photo credit should read DAMIEN MEYER/AFP/Getty Images) DAMIEN MEYER

Princess Charlene of Monaco arrives for her religious wedding with Prince Albert II on July 2, 2011, in Monaco.
DAMIEN MEYER/Getty Images

(CBS) - Charlene Wittstock, the new Princess of Monaco, reportedly attempted to escape multiple times to her native South Africa before her wedding to Prince Albert II this weekend.

According to Sunday reports in French newspapers, Wittstock tried "to flee three times"  and first sought refuge in her country's embassy in Paris when she was in town for a wedding dress fitting in May.

Pictures: Charlene Wittstock and Prince Albert II
Pictures: Monaco wedding's civil ceremony
Pictures: The religious ceremony
Special section: Monaco's royal wedding

After her passport was allegedly taken away from her, she was persuaded by senior Palace officials to move on with her wedding, French newspaper Le Journal du Dimanche reports. But she was said to still be doubtful and tried to escape again later in May during Monaco Formula 1 Grand Prix.

The newspaper also alleges that Wittstock had her passport confiscated again by Monaco officials just last week while she was en route to Nice airport, where she was attempting to board a one-way flight to South Africa.

Her second passport confiscation was reportedly confirmed by senior police officials to Le Figaro newspaper.

The reports come amidst rumors that Albert fathered another illegitimate child. The prince already has two children out of wedlock: Alexandre, 6, and Jazmin, 19.

Pictures: Charlene Wittstock
Pictures: The prince's love child

A chief advisor to Albert at the Monaco Palace said the recent allegations were false and "completely crazy."

"Please believe me, none of this is true, and we think it comes from utter jealousy," Christiane Stahl told People magazine last Tuesday. "Charlene never left to go to the airport, nothing like that ever happened. She was never upset and never wanted to stop the wedding."

Despite the reports, Wittstock and Albert moved forward with their nuptials and were married Friday in a civil ceremony held in the throne room of the prince's palace in Monte Carlo. The couple exchanged vows once again a day later in glamorous Roman-Catholic ceremony, with guests including supermodel Naomi Campbell, French president Nicholas Sarkozy, and former "James Bond" star Roger Moore.

The newlyweds are said to be heading today for their honeymoon in South Africa, where they will reportedly be staying at a luxury resort in the seaside town of Umhlanga.

  • Joyce Lee

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