Prince Charles’s Charity Embroiled in Political Scandal

Worrying news from the Prince's Foundation

Prince Charles
Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, known as the Duke of Rothesay when in Scotland, during a visit to DS McGregor and Partners Veterinary Surgery, as part of a two-day visit to Scotland, on July 29, 2021 in Thurso, Caithness, United Kingdom.
Paul Campbell - WPA Pool/Getty Images

In 1986, Prince Charles founded what would eventually become known as The Prince’s Foundation, part of a group of nonprofits that he heads. The organization’s website emphasizes its commitment to sustainability and the holistic approach that it takes to environmental and societal issues. Alternately, as the organization writes, “by understanding the balance, the order and the relationships between ourselves and the natural world we can create a more sustainable future.”

It’s an impressive statement of ideals. But according to a new report at Air Mail, some within the organization may have a few less-than-idealistic things to answer for. Stuart Heritage writes that Michael Fawcett, the chief executive of the Prince’s Foundation, “temporarily stepped down from his position amid claims he offered to reward a Saudi businessman with a knighthood, British citizenship, and a seat in the House of Lords in return for donations totaling more than $2 million.”

The businessman in question is Mahfouz Marei Mubarak bin Mahfouz, whose father is one of the wealthiest people in Saudi Arabia. As The Guardian noted earlier this month, Prince Charles presented Mahfouz with an honorary CBE in 2016. Air Mail’s article points out that the ceremony was “not recorded in the official public list of royal engagements.”

What’s come to light so far certainly gives the sense of powerful people engaged in troubling transactions. The full extent of it isn’t entirely clear yet; there may be more scandals yet to break within this larger one.

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