File on alleged cash-for-honours scandal involving King passed to prosecutors

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A file of evidence into an alleged cash-for-honours scandal involving one of the King’s charities has been passed by police to the Crown Prosecution Service.

The Metropolitan Police launched an investigation in February following a series of newspaper articles alleging a donor to The Prince’s Foundation was offered help securing a knighthood.

Anti-monarchy group Republic made a formal complaint to Met detectives about Charles and former close confidant Michael Fawcett in September 2021, following the stories.

Mr Fawcett, who has since resigned as chief executive of The Prince’s Foundation in the wake of the alleged scandal, had been accused of promising to help a Saudi billionaire donor achieve British citizenship and the honour.

Prince of Wales Garden Party
Michael Fawcett resigned from his role with the charity (David Cheskin/PA)

“The investigation remains ongoing and we will not be providing a running commentary on its progress.”

The force said in September that a man aged in his 50s and a man in his 40s were spoken to under caution earlier that month, on September 6, two days before the Queen died and Charles became King.

It is understood the King has not been spoken to by police, nor has he been requested to do so.

The Sunday Times has now reported prosecutors are expected to decide before Christmas if charges will be brought, with the King’s alleged involvement possibly heard in court.

Buckingham Palace said it would not comment on an ongoing police inquiry.

Last autumn, the Mail on Sunday published a letter from 2017 in which Mr Fawcett reportedly wrote that he was willing to make an application to change businessman Mahfouz Marei Mubarak bin Mahfouz’s honorary CBE to a knighthood, and support his application for citizenship.

The letter, written on headed notepaper in Mr Fawcett’s then-capacity as chief executive of the Dumfries House Trust, said the applications would be made in response to “the most recent and anticipated support” of the trust.

Mr Mahfouz is reported to have donated large sums to restoration projects of particular interest to Charles.

When the investigation was launched, a spokesperson for Charles at Clarence House said the then Prince of Wales had “no knowledge of the alleged offer of honours or British citizenship on the basis of donation to his charities”.

Mr Mahfouz is said to deny any wrongdoing.

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