Prince Charles will no longer be accepting cash donations for his charities, a British royal office has been quoted by media as saying. The decision was taken after allegations surfaced that a cash donation of roughly $3 millionwas accepted by Prince Charles from former Qatari prime minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani between 2011 and 2015.
Prince Charles will stop accepting large cash donations for his charities after he came under scrutiny over a report that he had accepted a $3.1 million donation, some of it in a suitcase and shopping bags, from a Qatari billionaire. https://t.co/F7m3wsoJ5p— The New York Times (@nytimes) June 29, 2022
Britain’s Prince Charle’s office was quoted on Thursday as saying that the Prince “operates on advice”. “Situations, contexts change over the years. I can say with certainty for more than half a decade with the situation as it has evolved, this has not happened and it would not happen again … That was then, this is now,” said the source in the royal office.
The statement came after reports emerged earlier this week that the Prince of Wales’s Charitable Fund had received donations from the Qatar PM in three payments, in cash stashed in a suitcase and handbags. The payments were reportedly made in Euro notes of the denomination €500. The first payment was reportedly received in a suitcase, and the other two in shopping bags in London’s Fortnum and Mason department store.
The donation was reportedly accepted by Prince Charles in person. These funds were then passed on to the Prince of Wales Charitable Fund (PWCF). The donations were said to be made by Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber al-Thani. The Sheikh was Prime Minister of Qatar from 2007 to 2013 and the donations had been made between 2011 and 2015.
Sheikh Hamad had served as the head of the country’s sovereign wealth fund when he held the office of PM from 2007 to 2013. During his term, he had reportedly used Qatar’s financial assets for high-profile investments in corporate Britain, including investing in luxury department store Harrods.
Sheikh was named in Panama Papers in 2016 and Pandora Papers in 2021 for allegedly using offshore companies in tax havens.
Disputes surrounding Prince Charles’ charitable endeavours
One of Prince Charles’ charities, The Prince’s Foundation, was the subject of a British Police inquiry in February of this year after media reports claimed that a Saudi businessman had been promised royal honour and British citizenship in exchange for donations.
The Sunday Times reported in September 2021 that Michael Fawcett, the prince’s former assistant and the foundation’s former chief executive, allegedly offered to assist Saudi business mogul Mahfouz Marei Mubarak bin Mahfouz after he gave roughly £1.5 million to royal charities.