On Thursday, a report sanctioned by the Prince’s Foundation from auditing firm, Ernst&Young, found Mr Fawcett had coordinated with fixers over an honour for a Saudi Arabian businessman who donated to Charles’s charity. The report was released on Thursday, which coincided with the Court of Appeal’s ruling concerning Meghan and the Mail on Sunday. Following the release of the report, Richard Palmer, royal correspondent for the Daily Express alleged the release was “perhaps no accident”.
He said: “It was perhaps no accident that Charles’s charity chose the day of Meghan’s court ruling to release a damaging report into the cash for access scandal.”
The investigation by the auditor found Charles’s aide had been in contact with so-called ‘fixers’, regarding honours for a donor between 2014-18.
The investigation did add, however, the activity took place without the knowledge or approval of the Prince’s Foundation.
Clarence House has previously insisted Charles had no knowledge of the incident.
Prince Charles was unaware of the communications Clarence House said
Prince Charles and his former aide Michael Fawcett
A summary of the report read: “With respect to the allegation of securing honours for a donor in exchange for donations, there is evidence that communication and coordination took place between the CEO at the time and so-called ‘fixers’ regarding honorary nominations for a donor between 2014-18.
“There is no evidence that trustees at the time were aware of these communications.”
Mr Fawcett resigned last month following the allegations he held talks with Mahfouz Marei Mubarak bin Mahfouz over securing a CBE and a British citizenship.
Mr bin Mahfouz was given an honorary CBE by Charles in a private ceremony in 2016.
Prince Charles’s aide has now resigned The probe also found Mr Fawcett and another senior unnamed employee of the foundation, were involved in a transfer of money from the Mahfouz Foundation, founded by Mr bin Mahfouz, to the Children and the Arts Foundation (CATA), which is semi-defunct.
Charles ceased to be patron of the charity in 2019.
Dame Sue Bruce, chair of the Prince’s Foundation said the incident had been a difficult chapter but lessons will be learned going forward.
A previous statement from Clarence House said: “It is important to His Royal Highness that the charities which bear his name operate to the highest standards, in accordance with rules established by charity regulators.
“We are taking this opportunity to reinforce guidance to these charities, particularly in respect of their relationships with supporters.”
The release of the report came as the Duchess of Sussex won her privacy case against Associated Newspapers, who owns the Daily Mail, The Mail On Sunday and MailOnline.
Princes’s Foundation has also denied knowing of the communication
Prince Charles: Meghan won her privacy case
The court found the letter published in the paper was private and “deeply personal”.
In a statement, Meghan said: “In the nearly three years since this began, I have been patient in the face of deception, intimidation and calculated attacks.
“The courts have held the defendant to account and my hope is that we all begin to do the same.
“Because as far removed as it may seem from your personal life, it’s not.
“Tomorrow it could be you.
“These harmful practices don’t happen once in a blue moon – they are a daily fail that divide us and we all deserve better.”
Prince Charles: Meghan released a statement following the decision
Clarence House has been approached for comment by Express.co.uk.
Source: EXPRESS CO UK