Prince Charles received donation of $1 million from Ben Laden family: report
Prince Charles received a $1.19 million donation to his charitable trust from the family of slain Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, according to a report in The Sunday Times.
Although there’s no indication that the Saudi family did something wrong. The revelation increases the scrutiny of the 73-year-old prince’s charitable organizations, which have been shaken by allegations of criminal wrongdoing.
Several of his advisers urged Charles not to accept the donation of the patriarch of the Bakr bin Laden family and his brother Shafiq — half-brothers of the head of terror Osama — according to sources cited in the newspaper.
Charles, 73, agreed to receive the donation to the Prince of Wales Charitable Fund (PWCF) after meeting 76-year-old Bakr at Clarence House in London in 2013, despite the objections of the trustees and the board, the report said
Ian Cheshire, president of PWCF, testified that the donation was accepted by the five trustees at the time.
In February, the British police launched an investigation into another Charles charity fund over a scandal related to a Saudi businessman.
The chief of the Prince’s Foundation resigned last year after an internal inquiry into the allegations.
Michael Fawcett, the foundation’s executive director, had initially agreed to suspend his appointment following revelations in the newspapers about his ties to a Saudi national.
The man, the magnate Mahfouz Marei Moubarak bin Mahfouz, had donated substantial sums to restoration projects of particular interest to Charles.
Fawcett, a former servant of the Prince of Wales who was close to Queen Elizabeth II’s heir for decades is suspected of coordinating efforts to grant a royal honor and even British citizenship to Mahfouz.
Mahfouz reportedly denies any wrongdoing.
The Charities Commission, which regulates and supervises charities in England and Wales, said in November that he had initiated a formal investigation into donations received by the Mahfouz Charitable Trust that was intended for the Prince’s Foundation.
The Prince’s Federation, established in 1986, is not regulated by the Charities Commission but is registered with the Scottish Charity Regulator.
In September, the Scottish organization launched its own investigation into reports that the foundation had accepted money from a Russian banker who had been sentenced for money laundering.