"like a praetorian guard"

The Praetorian Guard was an elite bodyguard used by the Roman Emperors, including Julius Caesar, Augustus and, finally, Constantine I who dissolved them in the 4th century.

Initially a positive peace-keeping force, the Guard latterly became infamous for being a group of assassins and mercenaries, who could be paid to harm emperors or civilians. The Emperor Claudius came to the throne with the support of the Praetorian Guard, members of whom also killed his predecessor, Caligula.

The term ‘praetorian guard’ is commonly used today to suggest an elite, loyal group of personal bodyguards belonging to a powerful person.