The Metropolitan Police Service has concluded its cash for honours probe into the Prince’s Foundation, with no charges made and no further action expected, it has announced.
The Met’s Special Enquiry Team (SET) had launched the investigation following media reports that a donor to the charity, Mahfouz Marei Mubarak bin Mahfouz, was offered help to gain an honour.
The investigation included an assessment of a letter that was passed to the police in September 2021, following the media reporting. This letter was from the then Prince Charles, thanking Mahfouz for his donations. Mahfouz later went on to receive a CBE.
The claims were investigated under the Honours (Prevention of Abuses) act 1925.
The Prince’s Foundation provided a number of relevant documents which were reviewed alongside existing information, and the investigation began in February last year. The process also included liaison with The Prince’s Foundation about the findings of an independent investigation into fundraising practices.
A statement from the Met says that:
“As part of the investigation the SET obtained court production orders, spoke with a number of witnesses and reviewed in excess of 200 documents.
“Officers also contacted a media organisation to request specific documents which were referenced in published articles so that the Met could consider them as part of the assessment.”
On Tuesday, 6 September 2022, police also interviewed a man aged in his 50s and a man aged in his 40s under caution at a London police station.
A file was passed to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) on 31 October 2022 for early investigative advice, with offences under the Honours (Prevention of Abuses) Act 1925 and Bribery Act 2010 considered.
The Met statement concludes:
“With the benefit of the CPS’s early investigative advice, and after careful consideration of the information received as a result of the investigation to date, the Met has concluded that no further action will be taken in this matter.
“Should any new information or evidence come to light that requires further assessment, this will be carried out by the Met’s SET.”