Continued from page 1

“It was a statement which very nearly cost Clinton the presidency when it later turned out that he had lied,” Mr. Wolodarski wrote in the Dagens Nyheternewspaper.

“By giving the press interview, the king of Sweden has multiplied interest in his own crisis. It is the truth which will now dictate what happens.”

The news agency interview was the king’s second attempt to dismiss the scandal. When the book was published, the monarch used a news conference after his annual moose hunt to appeal for closure on the matter.

“Now we’re turning over a new leaf,” he said.

His words have since become the phrase of choice for Swedes joking about their own indiscretions.

The scandal deepened in May, when Anders Lettstrom, a friend of the king’s, was recorded talking to suspected mobsters about a payoff to Mille Markovic, a former owner of a sex club in Stockholm who claimed to have pictures of the king with two naked women.

Swedish Radio aired part of those recordings in which Mr. Lettstrom is heard discussing the photos, some of which have been seen by the commercial Swedish broadcaster TV 4.

Mr. Lettstrom told the TT news agency that he contacted “criminals” but insisted that the king was unaware of his actions.

Because of the unique constitutional role of the royal family in Sweden, the king enjoys immunity from most laws and cannot be impeached in the same way an elected president can.

Nevertheless, politicians from across the political spectrum are calling for a formal investigation and a parliamentary tribunal.

“The only person who can look into this is the monarch himself, [he] who wishes it to blow over,” said Sven Erik Osterberg, a Social Democrat member of parliament and a member of the Swedish constitutional oversight committee, which, he says, has the power to investigate politicians but not members of the royal family.

He added that only the king has the authority to initiate an investigation of a member of the royal family.

The monarch’s wife, Queen Silvia, has avoided public comments on the scandal. She has been dogged by allegations that her late father, Walter Sommerlath, was a Nazi who ran a weapons factory confiscated from Jewish owners during World War II.

A Swedish television program, “Cold Facts,” exposed her father’s past in a documentary in December. At first, she denied the charges and insisted that her father ran a toy factory with no connection to Jews.

The king’s behavior also raised questions about the long-term viability of the monarchy, which receives $20 million a year in taxpayer funds.

Story Continues →