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Saudi Billionaire Prince Refuses Settlement With MBS

Saudi Billionaire Prince Refuses Settlement With MBSSaudi Billionaire Prince Refuses Settlement With MBS

Saudi renowned billionaire, Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal is reported to have rejected a settlement with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (aka MBS)  in return for his freedom.

The Financial Times reported two sources briefed on the investigations as saying that the prince intends to fight the allegations against him in court. He even hired lawyers, Middle East Monitor reported.

The Saudi prince was arrested last month along with more than 200 people including members of the royal family and senior officials in the largest anti-corruption purge in the kingdom’s history.

However, many princes are reported to have reached a financial settlement in exchange for their freedom.

Saudi Arabia wants to secure at least $100 billion in the mass purge to finance its budget deficit.

Bin Talal’s domestic and foreign investments have been severely hit with his detention that approaches its second month.

The paper said Bin Talal has helped many financial and banking institutions over the years, most notably the US- bank Citigroup. “Now it is Prince al- waleed who is engulfed in a crisis following his detention last month as part of Riyadh’s anti-corruption crackdown. But, in his hour of need, nobody has publicly come to his aid as billions of dollars have been wiped off his fortune and the investment firm he founded, Kingdom Holding Company, has been plunged into uncertainty” the paper added.

However, the paper reported a banker close to Prince Talal, 62, as saying that the prince might resort to striking a deal with the Saudi authorities to secure his freedom, which would mean that he has to relinquish some of his fortune.

 MBS Buys $300m Chateau

Meanwhile, MBS has been revealed as the owner of a French chateau described as the world’s most expensive home, according to a report in the New York Times, France 24 reported.

The purchase of the vast property west of Paris for $300 million (275 million euros) would be the latest in a string of extravagant purchases by the powerful prince, who is the master behind the mass purge.

Saudi officials have declined to comment on the report, which comes after French investigative website Mediapart similarly pointed to the prince as the owner in July.

The Times reported that bin Salman bought the chateau through a firm managed through his personal foundation, Eight Investment Company, which also handled his 2015 purchase of a $500 million yacht.

Along with the chateau and yacht, the Times also reported earlier this month that a Leonardo da Vinci painting sold for $450 million in November was sold to a Saudi prince acting on behalf of the controversial crown prince.

 

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