Billionaire Mohamed Al Fayed dead at 94 - one day before 26th anniversary of crash that killed son Dodi, Princess Diana

08:18 02.09.2023

Egyptian billionaire Mohamed Al Fayed, owner of Harrods department store and the Fulham Football Club, has passed away at the age of 94, according to a statement released by his family. Al Fayed has been plagued by grief since the tragic car crash in Paris 26 years ago, which claimed the lives of his son, Dodi Fayed, and Princess Diana. The flamboyant businessman spent years mourning their loss and has been a vocal critic of the British establishment, whom he blames for their deaths. Al Fayed believed that the royal family orchestrated the accident due to their disapproval of Diana's relationship with an Egyptian. He also claimed that Diana was pregnant with Dodi's child and planning to marry him, a union that the royal family could not tolerate due to religious differences.

In 2008, Al Fayed publicly named Prince Philip, two former London police chiefs, and the CIA as alleged conspirators in the accident during an inquest. However, subsequent investigations conducted in the UK and France concluded that the fatal crash was caused by the reckless actions of their driver and the pursuit of paparazzi. Despite these findings, Al Fayed remained steadfast in his beliefs.

The recent portrayal of Al Fayed's relationship with the royal family in season five of The Crown shed further light on his tumultuous history. Salim Daw portrayed the billionaire, depicting his growing connection with Diana. Born in Alexandria, Egypt, on January 27, 1929, Al Fayed moved to Britain in the 1960s and embarked on a successful business career. At the height of his wealth, he owned the Ritz hotel in Paris, the Fulham soccer team in London, and the prestigious Harrods department store in Knightsbridge.

Al Fayed's fortune, estimated at 1.7 billion pounds ($2.1 billion) this year, ranked him as the 104th richest person in the UK according to the Sunday Times Rich List. However, his rise to prominence was not without controversy. In the 1980s, he engaged in a highly-publicized battle with rival tycoon Tiny Rowland over control of the House of Fraser group, which included Harrods. Despite allegations of dishonesty and misrepresentation, Al Fayed and his brother ultimately gained control of the company.

Moreover, Al Fayed found himself embroiled in the infamous "cash for questions" scandal in the 1990s. The scandal involved allegations that he bribed British lawmaker Neil Hamilton with cash and luxury accommodations in exchange for parliamentary favors. Although Al Fayed emerged victorious in a libel suit brought against him, his reputation within the British establishment remained tarnished.

In addition to his business ventures, Al Fayed was an avid sports enthusiast. He bought the struggling Fulham soccer team in 1997 and invested heavily in its improvement. Under his ownership, the club achieved promotion to the Premier League in 2001. Al Fayed also enjoyed a close friendship with the late Michael Jackson and erected a statue of the pop icon outside Fulham's London stadium in 2011.

The death of Mohamed Al Fayed, just one day prior to the anniversary of his son's tragic accident, marks the end of an era for the flamboyant businessman. His legacy is one of prosperity, controversy, and unwavering determination to challenge the status quo.

/ Saturday, September 2, 2023, 8:18 AM /

themes:  CIA

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