Apparently, Prince Stefan Černetić is a straight up fraud.
If you are one of the more than dozens of people who have knelt before the “royal” as he bestowed knighthood upon you, then sorry to break the news, but you might have been duped.
This was confirmed by Antonio Costantini, an investigating magistrate looking into a series of allegations against Černetić.
Costantini told The Daily Beast that:
He’s a fraud.
He’s been able to create this false persona that is not based in any form of reality. Fake honors [sic] and documents led to real recognition by those who were duped.
You see, for the better part of two decades, Černetić has gallivanted around Europe meeting royalty, bestowing honours, and carrying out other princely duties:
Černetić has been given an incredible number of honors, including the presidential medal of honor in Italy that was pinned to him by former president Giorgio Napolitano.
He has met and been photographed with European royal families and high ranking Vatican clergy, according to his Facebook page.
Apparently honors beget more honors, and most of his awards seem to be given based on previous medals rather than on any verification of the prince’s blue blood, or lack thereof.
In 2015, it was Pamela Anderson’s turn:
On June 20, 2015, American actress Pamela Anderson, wearing a long white gown and dizzyingly high heels, knelt before Prince Stefan Černetić (sometimes spelled Tchernetich) of the Imperial Royal House of Montenegro & Macedonia as he bestowed upon her the title “Countess de’ Gigli,” Countess of the Lilies, by touching each shoulder with a dull-edged sword and reciting a set of vows.
The knighting ceremony was followed by the 8th annual royal “Ball of Lilies” in a lavish 17th-century castle on the Italian riviera complete with official photographers, ladies in tiaras, and men in waistcoats and tails.
According to the prince’s website, which has a gallery of photos from that event and many others like it, the Baywatch beauty was honored with the title “for her seaworld charity involvement worldwide.”
But, depending on the outcome of the investigation, it could all soon change for Černetić.
His modest home in Turin was raided last month by Italy’s Carabinieri military police. They “sequestered his computer, documents, medals and the Montenegro flags he used on his Mercedes to give the appearance of an official motorcade”.
[L]aunched a formal investigation into alleged fraudulent activities that he, along with an accomplice from near Naples who acted as his valet and sometimes as an ambassador from Montenegro, have engaged in since 2009.
And, apparently, his name is Stefano, not Stefan.
How dare he.
The potential charges include false certification to a public official, and fraud as related to an “unpaid luxury hotel bill in the Italian province of Puglia”, where the prince stayed last summer:
The hotel sent the prince’s rather hefty bill to the Montenegrin Foreign Ministry, which responded by saying they had never heard of the prince, the ambassador or, in fact, any of those on the list as Montenegrin diplomats.
He is also being investigated for the use of false documents to obtain diplomatic license plates for his car.
Stefano denied the accusations:
“I am not a fake prince,” he said, adding in not very princely diction, “I can guarantee 100 percent that these charges are big lies and bullshit.”
In fact, he says, this is the result of a regal feud, a war between aristocrats.
“Montenegro has two royal houses,” he explained. “The other royal house is filled with Freemasons who pay journalists €300,000 to €500,000 to defame me.”
Černetić says that when Montenegro left Serbia and became an independent republic in 2006, the government only officially recognized one royal house, that of the Petrović-Njegoš dynasty, though he insists that the snub does not cancel out his lineage, which he says he can prove goes all the way back to the Roman emperor Constantine.
“My coat of arms is the original one,” he insists. Anderson, he said, continues to pay him homage, telling him that the allegations are “good publicity” and that he shouldn’t worry.
“I’m not a crook,” he says. “I’m a serious person. I’m doing my job.”
Okay, Stefano, let’s see where you are in a month or so after your trial and we can take it from there.