Photo: Press Photo
A Saudi princess was stopped trying to leave a Paris hotel, along with her 60-person entourage, without settling a six million euro ($7.7 million) bill, French media reported.According to the French daily Le Parisien, staff at the Shangri-La hotel – in the upscale Iena area – called the police when Maha al-Sudani, a former wife of Crown Prince Nayef ben Abdel Aziz, tried to leave at 3:30 a.m. last Thursday.
The Saudi Arabian ambassador was also contacted during the incident, added Le Parisien. Sudani, the paper wrote, enjoys diplomatic immunity and so has not been charged.
Radio France International, meantime, cited the hotel as saying it had no unpaid bills outstanding.
Agence France-Presse got the same story from the luxury hotel’s director, Alain Borgers, who said there were “no problems” with its clients. The princess has a shady reputation in the City of Light over non-payment of bills totalling as much as 15 million euros for jewels, clothes and hotel accommodation.
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In 2009, fashion chain Key Largo went to court to obtain 89,000 euro owed by the princess, while other creditors included Dior, Chaumet and Victoria Casal, The Guardian reported.
Jamila Boushaba, who ran the O Caprices De Lili store, said she was told by a visiting envoy from the Saudi royal family in 2009 when she tried to claim a 70,000 euro bill from the princess, “I’m afraid we can’t go around settling bills for the princess’s knickers.”
Boushaba added: “When I called last one of her staff asked why I went to the media. I said it was to get my money. He replied: ‘What, you’ve caused all this trouble and you still want your money?”‘
According to RFI, King Abdallah has previously grounded her, confining her to a palace for two years.
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