Another Security Scare For Prince -- Anti-Royalist Tries To Spray Charles

AUCKLAND, New Zealand - A man muttering he wanted "to remove the stink of royalty" tried to spray Prince Charles with a can of air freshener today as the heir to the British throne chatted with well-wishers.

The man, 58-year-old Castislav Bracanov, is a Yugoslav immigrant and anti-royalist who had been on a list of potential troublemakers for the prince's five-day visit in New Zealand, police said.

Bracanov was wrestled to the ground within 10 feet of the prince. Charles briefly watched police haul him away and then continued to chat with a woman in the crowd at Auckland's waterfront.

It was his second security scare in two weeks. On Jan. 26 in Sydney, Australia, a student fired blanks from a starter's pistol at him during an outdoor ceremony.

The prince hardly flinched and was later praised for his calm.

In an interview published today by The Australian newspaper, before the latest incident, the prince joked about his cool demeanor when threatened in Sydney: "A thousand years of breeding have gone into this, you know.

"I can't worry about whether people are going to be rushing out of the crowd, or something, and bop me on the head, because you can't get on with life then," Charles was quoted as saying.

The prince, who is trying to bolster his image following the 1992 breakup of his marriage to Princess Diana, has insisted on greeting small crowds during his trip.

In a separate television interview to be broadcast on the Nine Network late today, he said, "We are not all like James Bond or Indiana Jones.

"You don't step to one side and go `blatt!' " he said while making a mock karate-chop gesture.

In the incident today, the prince had just inspected yachts taking part in an around-the-world race that were tied up at Auckland's waterfront. He then talked to some of several hundred people at the scene.

"This old guy raced out of the crowd with spray can above his head. He got near Charles before being dive-tackled by police. It was over in seconds," said a witness, Ross Setford.

Bracanov was charged with disorderly conduct and held for court tomorrow.

He was imprisoned for two weeks in 1990 during a tour by Queen Elizabeth II after he threw horse manure at athletes promoting the Commonwealth Games held in Auckland that year.

"Basically he doesn't like royalty or what it stands for," Radio New Zealand's reporter said.

Information from Reuters is included in this report.