Money, yes. But not just any. In recent days, Prince Charles has found himself in spite of himself at the heart of a financial scandal that goes beyond the borders of the United Kingdom. The reason ? A donation of half a million pounds signed by a Russian businessman to the foundation of the son of Elizabeth II. Last May, the future British monarch wrote a letter of thanks to Dmitry Leus, claiming to be “incredibly grateful” for his “immense generosity” to the Prince’s Foundation and that his donation had brought him “great comfort”. Prince Charles then met the generous donor at one of his castles shortly after the payment, reports The Sunday Times. But months later, the £ 535,000 donated to Prince Charles’ foundation had to be paid back in full.
The reason ? The ethics committee of the Prince Charles Foundation has expressed concerns about the background of the Russian, found guilty in his country of money laundering before his conviction was overturned by the courts. A regulator therefore opened an investigation into the possible links between the donor and the royal foundation, after discovering evidence of a possible deception or even a financial package also involving a Saudi intermediary. Shortly after his check, Dmitry Leus was informed that the money had not been donated to the Prince’s Foundation but to another charity of which Charles is the patron, Children & the Arts. He then received a letter, appearing to come from this association, explaining that his money had “enabled him to implement his educational programs for disadvantaged children attending schools”.
Prince Charles ready for a showdown
Except that the association ensures that it never received the donation from Dmitry Leus, who would prepare a legal action to find out what happened to his money. Prince Charles’s closest aide, Michael Fawcett, resigned his post as chief executive of the Prince’s Foundation last week after it was revealed he had “fixed” an honor in exchange for money. Dmitry Leus has publicly denied making any donations in exchange for a meeting, although he wrote in an email that “if it was not possible” to arrange a date, he “would prefer to recover [his] family’s money “. The office of the Scottish Charity Regulator, where the charity is based, said it has opened a formal investigation. “The trust never took money from Dmitry Leus. Our ethics committee rejected it and this decision was ratified by our administrators on August 9, 2021, explained the spokespersons of the prince. The prince of Wales fully supports the ongoing investigation at the foundation. “
Prince Charles © Agency