Alimony for Sheikh children: £ 5 million for holidays, one million for entertainment

Sheikh Muhammad bin Rashid al-Maktoum, Dubai’s billionaire ruler, is required to pay around £ 554 million in alimony and security costs to his ex-wife Princess Haia and their two children, as part of a divorce settlement considered the most expensive that a British court has ruled.

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Judge Moore of the London court ruled on Tuesday that the ruler of Dubai must pay a lump sum of £ 251.5 million within three months to cover the costs of securing the princess for the rest of her life.

He is also required to provide a £ 290m bank guarantee from HSBC for £ 11m annual alimony payments, as well as ongoing security costs for children into adulthood. Also included are £ 3 million in education costs and £ 9.6 million in case of alimony payments.

The divorce case that reached the upper courts provides a glimpse into the world of the Persian Gulf elites and their vast fortunes, which according to the judge’s ruling reflects “unprecedented quality of life and wealth.”

The global divorce capital

The trial has also led to embarrassing criticism and revelations about Sheikh Muhammad – the Vice President and Prime Minister of the Emirates and one of the most prominent leaders in the Middle East.

It is difficult to estimate the exact value of the divorce agreement, as the court has ruled that Sheikh Muhammad (72) must pay annual security costs of £ 1 million for the two children, aged 9 and 14, for the rest of their lives or until the court orders otherwise. .

It is estimated that this is the highest financial arrangement given in London, which is considered the capital of the world’s divorce after a series of generous arrangements in the millions of pounds granted to divorced spouses. And through mutual funds it owns a house worth £ 95 million near Kensington Palace and employs five housekeepers and a repairman. This is in addition to a mansion in Windsor worth £ 4.5 million.

Princess Haia fled Dubai to London in 2019 and demanded from the High Court in London to receive alimony of £ 1.4 billion from Sheikh Muhammad for the two children. She chose not to demand money she deserved when she was divorced, but only to cover security costs for the rest of her life and another £ 97 million in compensation, she claimed for personal items such as the diamond, pearl, sapphire and emerald collection she left behind when she fled Dubai. Worth £ 20 million, could fill an entire courtroom. The judge ruled in her favor £ 20.9 million for her personal belongings, including £ 13.6 million for jewelery.

The arrangement represents the final stage in one of the couple’s most bitter battles, which included a court ruling in October that Sheikh Muhammad was willing to use “his vast wealth, political power and international influence” against the princess (47) and allow his agents to hack into her phone using controversial Pegasus software Of the Israeli cyber company NSO.

Guest of Queen Bascott

The findings damaged the international reputation of Sheikh Muhammad, who maintains deep ties with the British establishment. The sheikh was a guest of the Queen at the Royal Ascot races and a prominent figure in the world of horse racing thanks to the Godolfin stables he owned.

Princess Haya, the daughter of the late King Hussein of Jordan, has so far received temporary alimony noting that since her arrival in Britain her capital has “eroded rapidly”, according to the ruling. “She said her financial situation was so difficult that he would soon force her to sell paintings, but she did not want to do so because the children would understand that she did so because of the empty spaces that would open up on the walls of the house,” the ruling said.

It was further alleged that the princess faced extortion attempts and a demand to pay £ 6.7 million to four security guards, but the ruling stressed that no evidence had been received to support these allegations.

The biggest part of paying alimony is to cover security. Sir Andrew McFarlane, president of the family court at the High Court, has previously ruled that Sheikh Muhammad “poses a great risk” to the safety of the princess and the children. ” The judge added that he took into account “the full weight of the resources available to him.” He further stated that Princess Aya testified that she felt “persecuted” by her ex-husband. Who has not “hacked” into the devices she owns “and no espionage has been carried out with his direct or implied consent.” In October, he appealed the ruling on the phone hack, claiming it was based on partial evidence.

The ruling turns the spotlight on family expenses. The court was presented with documents detailing Princess Haya £ 35.64 million in expenses between December 2019 and September 2021, which included £ 397,421 on holidays in 2021 and £ 77,770 on security for those holidays. For example, a family holiday at a hotel in Italy in the summer cost £ 631,000 and another £ 180,000 in flight costs. Holiday costs in Greece reached £ 274,000 plus a private jet lease for £ 210,000. An amount of £ 55,000 a week is required for ancillary expenses, including renting a private yacht.

Alimony gives children a budget of £ 5 million for seven annual holidays for a period of 9 weeks, including £ 1.8 million for private jet flights. The judge also approved £ 1 million a year for leisure expenses and £ 277,050 for pet care. An annual budget for a private tutor and nanny will be £ 100,000 and £ 111,295 respectively.

A spokesman for the sheikh said in response: “He has always cared for the welfare of the children. The court has ruled on the financial arrangement, and he does not intend to comment beyond that. He asks the media to respect the privacy of his children, and not to infiltrate their lives in Britain. ”

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