A SCOTTISH anti-monarchy group has said the news that King Charles’s estate will transfer more than £100 million into ethical investment funds is “nothing more than a PR exercise”.

It comes after The Guardian revealed earlier this week that the monarch was using the feudal concept of “bona vacantia” to hoover up the estates of people who died without a will or next of kin.

The newspaper found the funds had been used to renovate properties owned by the King, with the Duchy of Lancaster admitting it was used to finance the restoration of what it called “public and historic properties”.

In a statement given to The Guardian, a spokesperson for the Duchy said: “In line with the King’s longstanding support of ethical investing, the Duchy of Lancaster has begun the process of transferring its investment portfolio into ESG (ethical, social or environmental) funds.

READ MORE: Cost of UK Government's Queen Elizabeth House in Edinburgh revealed

“This process is expected to be completed by the end of the financial year.”

In response to the latest update, Scottish anti-monarchy campaign group Our Republic told The National it was “nothing more than a PR exercise”.

“This is a brazen example of ‘I’m not sorry I did it, I’m just sorry I got caught’," a spokesperson for the group said.

"Charles and his family have been profiting from the deaths of those they consider subjects for decades and it has never once crossed their thoughts that this morbid exploitation of ancient laws may not be right."

They added: “This change is nothing more than a PR exercise, but the damage is done. We thank those whose investigations [brought it] to light.

“The only way to bring this to an end is to remove the root cause of the outdated laws built around the royals – by bringing an end to the monarchy itself.”

READ MORE: EU independence paper offers ‘serious sustained case’, expert says

The Guardian also reported there has been no suggestion from the estate that it plans to cease collecting “bona vacantia” funds.

SNP MP Tommy Sheppard told The National: "It's absolutely shocking. You don't have to be a republican to know this isn't right. That money ought to go into some sort of charitable foundation that's used for the public good. 

"I can think of quite a number of contenders for it to be honest whether it's children's charities or something else. Give it to Age UK who provide services for elderly people."

Scottish Greens MSP Maggie Chapman added: "It's astonishing that the monarchy is trying to greenwash such ill-gotten investments. 

"You simply can't appear ethical after being caught taking tens of millions of pounds from the dead.

"Like the abhorrent, archaic feudal law they exploited to gain this wealth, the monarchy is long past its sell by date. 

"It's time Scotland abolished this self-serving, anti-democratic institution for good."

Those thoughts were echoed by anti-monarchy campaign group Republic, who reacted to the news on social media by saying: “An admission of unethical investments, but they will still be investing money taken from the dead.”