21 December 2021

What has the High Court ordered the ruler of Dubai to pay for?

21 December 2021

The ruler of Dubai has been ordered to pay more than £500 million to his ex-wife and their two children, as part of what is thought to be the largest financial award ordered by an English court.

Following their divorce, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, 72, will have to pay a lump sum of £251.5 million to his sixth wife, Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, 47, as well as make ongoing payments.

The total amount Sheikh Mohammed will have to pay could exceed or fall below this figure, depending on the lives of Al Jalila, 14, and Zayed, nine

These ongoing payments to the children, to cover their maintenance while under age before covering their security as adults, are underpinned by a bank guarantee of £290 million.

Here the PA news agency looks at some of the other details of the ruling published on Tuesday.

– Security

Much of the money Princess Haya will receive will go on her security, after the High Court previously found Sheikh Mohammed had authorised the hacking of her and her lawyers’ phones and orchestrated the abduction of two of his adult daughters.

Mr Justice Moor ordered that the costs of Princess Haya’s life-long security be paid up front.

He said: “I am absolutely clear that, in such circumstances, it would be quite wrong for the security payments to be made over many years by the source of the main threat.

“Not only would it be in his interests to reduce the quantum of the payments to save himself money, but it would also be in his interests to do so if that weakened the defences of HRH (Princess Haya) against him.”

Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein (right) gave evidence in the financial hearings at the Royal Courts of Justice in London (Aaron Chown/PA) (PA Wire)

– Animals and leisure

The family was given a budget of more than £277,000 for the children’s animals, including two ponies and one horse.

“I do, of course, accept that the children should have ponies to ride,” Mr Justice Moor said.

Princess Haya did not make a substantive claim for herself, aside from her security and compensation for her “lost” items as a result of the end of the marriage.

Mr Justice Moor said it had been agreed that Sheikh Mohammed would return some showjumping horses to Princess Haya – a former Olympic showjumper – valued at more than £500,000.

The judge later awarded just over £1 million a year for the children’s leisure.

He said: “I will have to do my best to come to a conclusion as to what is reasonable whilst remembering that the exceptional wealth and remarkable standard of living enjoyed by these children during the marriage takes this case entirely out of the ordinary.”

– Holidays

Mr Justice Moor ordered a total holiday budget for Princess Haya and the two children of £5.1 million, including seven international holidays over nine weeks, three long weekends in Jordan and two weeks away in the UK.

This included £1 million for private flights, more than £660,000 for accommodation and £300,000 for food, expenses and activities during the seven trips.

The High Court in London previously heard that during the marriage the family’s holiday costs at an Italian hotel one summer were £631,000, with flight costs of £180,000, due to the need to have a private plane for security reasons.

Sheikh Mohammed and Princess Haya attended Ascot during their marriage (David Davies/PA) (PA Wire)

– Jewellery and clothing

Mr Justice Moor also awarded Princess Haya more than £13.5 million for jewellery as part of her claim for property lost as part of the end of the marriage.

She told the High Court that she had left precious items behind when she left the United Arab Emirates because she did not want to be accused of stealing them.

Recalling Princess Haya’s evidence, Mr Justice Moor said: “It would have been very difficult to empty the room, as her jewellery collection would spread across the entire courtroom.”

Princess Haya had also asked for approximately 74 million euros – about £63 million – worth of haute couture to be returned to her.

Mr Justice Moor awarded the “relatively modest sum” of £1 million for the clothes.

The best videos delivered daily

Watch the stories that matter, right from your inbox