Prince Charles's aide faces probe over claims Saudi billionaire was promised knighthood for donations

PRINCE Charles’s closest aide faces a police probe over claims that a Saudi billionaire was promised a knighthood and British passport in return for donations.

Michael Fawcett, 58, was willing to help Dr Mahfouz Marei Mubarak bin Mahfouz, a leaked letter shows.

Former valet Fawcett, who has twice quit royal jobs because of scandals, has now stepped down temporarily as the £95,000-a-year chief executive of Charles’s charity The Prince’s Foundation.

Ex-Lib Dem MP Norman Baker has written to Met Police chief Cressida Dick demanding an investigation into potential corruption.

Mahfouz has donated £1.5million, spent mostly on renovating two of Charles’s properties in Scotland, where parts of the grounds are named after the Saudi.

It is alleged he paid tens of thousands to fixers with links to the prince who had told him they could secure him an honorary CBE, The Sunday Times reported. Mahfouz denies any wrongdoing.

Charles presented him with the gong in 2016.

Fawcett wrote to Mahfouz in 2017, saying: “In light of the ongoing and most recent generosity of His Excellency Sheikh Marei Mubarak Mahfouz bin Mahfouz, I am happy to confirm to you, in confidence, that we are willing and happy to support and contribute to the application for Citizenship.

“I can further confirm we are willing to make an application to increase His Excellency’s honour from Honorary CBE to that of KBE in accordance with Her Majesty’s Honours Committee.”

Fawcett, known for squeezing toothpaste on to Charles’s brush, declined to comment yesterday.

A friend of the prince told The Sun: “Charles would have no idea this kind of thing could be happening.

"But he will be upset with losing his closest aide.”

Saudi’s charity millions

THE Saudi tycoon who allegedly paid thousands to secure an honour made his fortune in hotels, ­property and manufacturing.

Dr Mahfouz Marei Mubarak bin Mahfouz, 51, has also donated ­millions to Oxbridge colleges and royal mansions Dumfries House and the Castle of Mey.

He is executive officer of the Saudi-based Marei bin Mahfouz Group, founded by his father Sheikh Marei Mubarak Mahfouz bin Mahfouz.

Dr Mahfouz splits his time between the Middle East and London, where he has an apartment overlooking Hyde Park.

In 2012, he founded the Mahfouz Foundation charity to aid UK education of Middle Eastern culture.

He and wife Faizah, also 51, are said to have four children.

Second annus horribilis for Queen

THE Queen described 1992 as an “annus horribilis” but 2021 seems just as bad after the scandal involving Charles’ aide.

FEBRUARY 16: Prince Philip, the Queen’s husband of 73-plus years, is in hospital.

FEBRUARY 18: Harry and Meghan hit back at the Queen's “service” after she strips them of patronages over Megxit.

MARCH 3: Her Majesty orders a probe into allegations Meghan bullied staff.

MARCH 7: The Sussexes claim a member of the Royal Family is racist in shock Oprah Winfrey US TV interview.

APRIL 9: Husband Prince Philip, 99, dies, and the Queen’s sits alone at the funeral.

MAY 16: The Queen's new dorgi dies.

JUNE 23: Accounts reveal the Queen lost £10.6million owing to the pandemic.

AUGUST 9: Prince Andrew is accused in court files of “rape in the first degree”.

SEPTEMBER 3: The Queen’s funeral plan, Operation London Bridge, is leaked.

SEPTEMBER 5: Prince Charles’ charity is investigated amid claims about his aide.

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