Princess Haya awarded £554M in UK's biggest ever divorce settlement

Princess Haya is awarded £554MILLION in Britain’s biggest ever divorce settlement with the ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed Al Maktoum: Landmark ruling also reveals claims about how ‘blackmailers’ were paid £7million to keep her affair with bodyguard secret

  • Princess Haya bint Hussein will receive a lump sum of £251m ‘clean break’ Sheikh Mohammed Al Maktoum
  • Bulk of £251m will be used for security costs to keep the princess and her young children safe from kidnap 
  • Further £290m awarded to pay for maintenance for two children Jalila, 14, and Zayed, 9, for rest of their lives
  • Judgment revealed claims from Haya that she paid out £7m to ‘blackmailers’ to hide affair with bodyguard

The ex-wife of the ruler of Dubai has been awarded £554m in Britain’s biggest ever divorce settlement.

Princess Haya bint Hussein will receive a lump sum payment of £251m as part of a ‘clean break’ from one of the world’s richest men, Sheikh Mohammed Al Maktoum, the High Court announced today.

A further £290m has been awarded to pay for maintenance for his two children Jalila, 14, and Zayed, 9, for the rest of their lives.

The bulk of the £251m will be used for security costs to keep the princess and her young children safe from kidnap.

And, in another bombshell, the judgement revealed how Princess Haya alleged that she had paid out £7million to ‘blackmailers’ on her security staff to keep secret her affair with her British bodyguard, Russell Flowers, which led to the breakdown of her marriage.

It was not suggested that Mr Flowers was involved in the alleged blackmail. 

Mr Justice Moor declared in a 73 page judgement that there was a ‘clear and ever-present risk’ to the princess and her two young children and that Sheikh Mohammed was the ‘main threat to her’.

The £554m figure awarded by Mr Justice Moor at the Family Division of the High Court dwarfs the previous highest settlement of £450m made in 2016 to the ex-wife of Russian oligarch Farkhad Akhmedov. 

Princess Haya bint Hussein will receive a lump sum payment of £251m as part of a ‘clean break’ from one of the world’s richest men, Sheikh Mohammed Al Maktoum, the High Court announced today

The judgement revealed how Princess Haya had paid out £7million to ‘blackmailers’ on her security staff to keep secret her affair with her British bodyguard, Russell Flowers, (circled left). Haya (middle) is seen next to Sheikh Mohammed on the right. The image was taken at Ascot  

The judgement revealed how Princess Haya alleged that she had paid out £7million to ‘blackmailers’ on her security staff to keep secret her affair with her British bodyguard, Russell Flowers, which led to the breakdown of her marriage. It was not suggested that Mr Flowers was involved in the alleged blackmail.   

Flowers, who served for five years in the Princess of Wales Royal Regiment, started working for Haya full time in 2016 and accompanied her on many trips abroad.

MailOnline first revealed that he started an affair with Haya after he was assigned to her at the sheikh’s 3,000 acre estate Dalham Hall in Suffolk.

Mr Flowers, who served for five years in the Princess of Wales Royal Regiment, started working for Haya full time in 2016 

The relationship ended Mr Flowers’s four year marriage 

Friends told Mail Online they would have adjoining rooms on overseas trips where he accompanied her. Flowers has refused to comment on the affair, citing a non-disclosure agreement.

The relationship ended the princess’s 16-year marriage and led to her fleeing Dubai in fear of her life after a loaded gun was left in her bedroom and she was told a helicopter would land at the royal palace and take her to prison. Giving evidence, the princess admitted she had taken money from one of her children’s bank accounts to ‘pay off’ a total of £7m to her alleged ‘blackmailers’.

Mr Flowers (pictured recently) has refused to speak about the affair 

Three former bodyguards who allegedly received the money were not named in court but identified as Mr A, B and C. It was not suggested that Mr Flowers was involved in the alleged blackmail

Mr A was said to have been given £2.5m while Mr B and Mr C shared £4.45m. The disclosure of the alleged payouts came as the princess was cross examined by her ex-husband’s legal team over money taken from her daughter’s account.

The court heard cash from the account had also been used to buy racehorses and another large sum sent to her brother to help fund his royal palace in Jordan.

Haya, 47, told the court it had been ‘convenient’ to use her daughter’s funds and she had hoped to repay the money but had yet to do so. ‘Those were the funds that I could get to make that payment quickly which were available to me,’ she told the court.

After hearing about the alleged blackmail, the judge remarked: ‘It sticks in the throat that these people have been able to get away with this and have not been charged.’

In his judgment he said: ‘This was clearly a most unsatisfactory episode. I realise I have not heard from the alleged blackmailers but nobody should be blackmailed and HRH must have been very frightened at this point. It would have been better if she had used her own allowance to fund all these payments.’

While the award will allow the princess to continue to live in the life of luxury she enjoyed as the sheikh’s sixth wife, it is £900m less than what her lawyers had originally demanded.

Lawyers for the princess had argued the huge sum was needed to keep her and the children safe from her ex-husband who a previous court hearing found was likely to have forcibly abducted two of his daughters after they attempted to flee Dubai.

Mr Justice Moor wrote in his judgment: ‘There will remain a clear and present risk to HRH for the remainder of her life, whether it be from HH (her ex) or just the normal terrorist and other threats faced by the princess in her position.’ 

Sheikh Mohammed – a close friend of the Queen over their mutual love of horse racing – was also found to have had his agents ‘hack’ the phones of his ex-wife and her lawyers, including Baroness Fiona Shackleton.

Following the princess’s affair, the sheikh had waged a campaign of intimidation forcing Haya to flee to London in fear of her life.

Giving evidence, the princess admitted she had taken money from one of her children’s bank accounts to ‘pay off’ a total of £7m to her alleged ‘blackmailers’.

Three former bodyguards who allegedly received the money were not named in court but identified as Mr A, B and C. It was not suggested that Mr Flowers was involved in the alleged blackmail. 

Mr A was said to have been given £2.5m while Mr B and Mr C shared £4.45m. 

The disclosure of the alleged payouts came as the princess was cross examined by her ex-husband’s legal team over money taken from her daughter’s account.

The court heard cash from the account had also been used to buy racehorses and another large sum sent to her brother to help fund his royal palace in Jordan.

Haya, 47, told the court it had been ‘convenient’ to use her daughter’s funds and she had hoped to repay the money but had yet to do so.

‘Those were the funds that I could get to make that payment quickly which were available to me,’ she told the court.

After hearing about the alleged blackmail, the judge remarked: ‘It sticks in the throat that these people have been able to get away with this and have not been charged.’

In his judgment he said: ‘This was clearly a most unsatisfactory episode. I realise I have not heard from the alleged blackmailers but nobody should be blackmailed and HRH must have been very frightened at this point. It would have been better if she had used her own allowance to fund all these payments.’

Mr Flowers, who served for five years in the Princess of Wales Royal Regiment, started working for Haya full time in 2016 and accompanied her on many trips abroad.

MailOnline first revealed that he started an affair with Haya after he was assigned to her at the sheikh’s 3,000 acre estate Dalham Hall in Suffolk.

Friends told Mail Online they would have adjoining rooms on overseas trips where he accompanied her. 

Mr Flowers has refused to comment on the affair, citing a non-disclosure agreement.

The relationship ended the princess’s 16-year marriage and led to her fleeing Dubai in fear of her life after a loaded gun was left in her bedroom and she was told a helicopter would land at the royal palace and take her to prison.

It is because of these threats that the bulk of the financial award will be used to pay for round the clock security when the family are at their London and country home and abroad.

Lawyers for the princess had argued hundreds of millions were needed to keep her and the children safe from her ex-husband who at a previous High Court hearing was found to have forcibly returned two of his daughters to Dubai when they attempted to flee the UAE. 

Princess Latifa was abducted from a yacht off the coast of India in 2017 and Princess Shamsa was abducted while in Cambridge and returned to Dubai in 2000.

It was during that custody battle that the 73-year-old sheikh – a close friend of the Queen over their mutual love of horse racing – ordered the hacking of his ex-wife’s phones and her lawyers, including Baroness Fiona Shackleton.

In allocating almost £250m for security Mr Justice Moor said there was a ‘clear and ever-present risk’ to the princess and her two young children.

He wrote: ‘There will remain a clear and present risk to HRH for the remainder of her life, whether it be from HH (her ex) for just the normal terrorist and other threats faced by the princess in her position.’

He added Sheikh Mohammed, who has an estimated £5bn fortune, was the ‘main threat to her’ and said the family should have £11m a year to cover all their security needs. 

Mr Justice Moor declared in a 73 page judgement that there was a ‘clear and ever-present risk’ to the princess and her two young children and that Sheikh Mohammed was the ‘main threat to her’


At a previous court hearing, the billionaire Dubai ruler was found on the balance of probabilities to have abducted two of his adult daughters, Shamsa (left) and Latifa (right) 

Princess Haya has been represented by high profile society divorce lawyer Fiona Shackleton (who she is seen with above outside court) 

Sheikh ‘abducted daughters and forcibly returned them to Dubai’  

At a previous court hearing, the billionaire Dubai ruler was found on the balance of probabilities to have abducted two of his adult daughters and forcibly returned them to Dubai.

In 2000 Princess Shamsa was snatched from a street in Cambridge and flown back to Dubai on a private jet after saying she wanted to leave the royal palace. And in 2018 Princess Latifa was abducted at gunpoint from a yacht off the coast of India and drugged and brought back to Dubai where she spent weeks in prison.

She had fled with her best friend Tiina Jauhiainen having paid former French spy Herve Jaubert to mastermind the escape. The pair met up with Jaubert on his yacht Nostromo and they sailed to to India where the plan was to fly to the US for a new life. But the yacht was tracked via its GPS and on the orders of Sheikh Maktoum boarded by Indian commandos.

Latifa was taken back to Dubai where she was ‘imprisoned’ in a villa and guarded round the clock. The 36-year-old later managed to smuggle out a series of videos where she pleaded for help and said she was being held hostage. Following complaints by the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, and at the urging of a Free Latifa campaign headed by Jauhiainen, photos began to emerge of the princess out and about with her friends.

Her cousin Marcus Essabi from Cardiff was able to visit her and she later issued a statement asking the Free Latifa campaign to stop all publicity. Latifa has also been allowed to leave Dubai and travel abroad to Iceland and Spain. 

The princess told the court she felt ‘under siege’ after being alerted to the hacking.

In a lengthy ruling made public for the first time today, Mr Justice Moor said the sums of money involved in the settlement took this ‘case out of the ordinary’.

He described some of the amounts being asked for as ‘eye watering’.

The judge said the family had enjoyed ‘exceptional wealth’ and ‘remarkable standard of living’ while living in Dubai and this helped him decide on the settlement.

Lawyers for the princess had initially asked for £1.4bn so that the princess, 48, would no longer depend on her ex-husband for any money.

This amount was dismissed by Mr Justice Moor although he said she would need ‘water tight’ security for the rest of her life.

In a 73-page ruling the judge produced a detailed schedule containing a breakdown of how he had arrived at the £554m sum that would give her a ‘clean break’ from her ex.

Subjects covered included holidays, staffing costs, house maintenance costs, leisure and security.

The award covers security costs up to the year 2068 when both the sheikh, 73, and his ex-wife will be dead.

Much of the security budget covers the princess and her family at their two homes – a £100m mansion alongside Kensington Palace in London and a 12-bedroom country home near Egham in Surrey.

Costs submitted to the court showed that wages for bodyguards will amount to £865,000 a year

The security budget allows for six top of the range maximum security cars to be bought every two years to ferry the family around.

The court was told that the cost of transporting the vehicles abroad for family holidays will be £900,000 a year.

The four-day hearing gave a revealing window into what the princess’s QC called a ‘money no object’ lifestyle she had enjoyed while married to the sheikh.

The sums of money discussed in the hearings always ran into the millions with £48,000 the smallest amount ever mentioned.

Sheikh Mohammed – a close friend of the Queen over their mutual love of horse racing – was also found to have had his agents ‘hack’ the phones of his ex-wife and her lawyers, including Baroness Fiona Shackleton. They are pictured together at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in 2014

In the written judgment Mr Justice Moor said he had decided on a figure of £11m a year in child maintenance based on the money the children had received each year from their father.

While living in Dubai, the sheikh paid £18m a year into the bank accounts of the two children.

Princess Haya had a £9m a year allowance and a further £82m for household spending while running the royal palaces.

The judge said the princess had fled Dubai in 2019 leaving behind much of her jewellery and designer clothes.

Included in the sum awarded to her as a lump sum was £20m for items that were left behind and unlikely to be retrieved.

Haya gave evidence over two days where she faced a rigorous cross examination by her ex-husband’s team of lawyers.

Sheikh Mohammed accompanying the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh on a visit to the Zayed National Museum in Abu Dhabi as part of their tour to the Gulf

Family’s luxury lifestyle: Staff of 80 for a family holiday and £2million blown on STRAWBERRIES

The luxury lifestyle enjoyed by Princess Haya and her family was revealed for the first time during the High Court hearing.

From a staff of 80 to run the royal palace to a summer holiday in Sardinia costing £631,000 the family enjoyed an existence few people could imagine.

With her now ex-husband worth an estimated £5bn money was no object while they lived in Dubai and travelled the world.

The court heard one summer holiday for the family cost £631,000. Another stay at a resort on a Greek island for a week was £274,000. Included in the Sardinia break at the was the hire of a private yacht for £55,000.

Nicholas Cusworth QC told the court the princess had access to 15 homes across the world, with Dalham Hall in Suffolk the main residence and close to the sheikh’s Godolphin racing stables.

The court was told that during the custody hearing in 2019 – which the sheikh did not attend – he bought £18m worth of racehorses for his stable.

The family could also use a £400m super yacht and for security reasons only travelled by private jet.

As another example of the money no object lifestyle the court heard the sheikh once spent £2m on strawberries for his family and staff.

In his ruling the judge said the children had a private tutor who charged £250 an hour for lessons and a further £200 an hour for preparation.

The Court also heard that nine-year-old Zayed had been bought three cars since arriving in the UK – even though he cannot drive the vehicles.

Under questioning over this expense by her husband’s QC, the princess said her son had been accustomed to having cars bought as gifts.

In his ruling the judge said he was unable to replicate pound for pound the lifestyle enjoyed by the family in Dubai but allocated over £1m a year for leisure activities and £200,000 a year for pets and animals kept by the family. 

Her lawyer Nicholas Cusworth QC argued that she should be allowed to live the same luxury lifestyle she has been accustomed to where ‘limitless’ money was available, and she had a staff of 80 people.

During cross examination by her ex-husband’s lawyers she was asked if she understood the value of money and replied ‘yes’.

Christopher Dyer QC questioned her claim that she wanted her children to live a normal life while claiming she needed £1.4bn.

In a breakdown of the money allocated, Mr Justice Moor said he had allowed £11m a year to pay for security, as the children get older this will be reduced to £8.2m and finally to £5.5m.

A detailed breakdown of security costs show that over £2m a year will be spent on cars and £3m a year on salaries for a team of bodyguards who are on duty round the clock.

A further £157,000 a year has been allocated for bonuses and £203,000 for their meals while on duty.

The judge allowed £5m a year to be spent by the princess of foreign holidays and weekends away in the UK.

A total of £1m has been allocated for seven flights on private jet with £667,000 on hotel accommodation. A further £300,000 a year was allocated for food and activities.

In her evidence the princess said the family would take nine weeks holiday a year abroad.

Her QC said the amount being claimed was reasonable as while still married to the sheikh she had access to numerous private jets, 15 homes overseas and a £400m super yacht.

Almost £300,000 a year was awarded for the cost of a nanny and a nurse for the children while a tutor for the children will be paid £100,000 a year.

Since fleeing to London the princess and her children have been living in a £100m mansion in Kensington and country home near Egham in Surrey.

The judge approved the spending of £1.6m for a kitchen extension and pizza oven to be built at the London home as well as security upgrades.

The sum of £500,000 was allocated for replacement of fixtures and fittings while £100,000 was for cleaning products and other household goods.

The cost of running the country home was put at £1m a year with staff wages running to £162,000.

The court was told there were five housekeepers and a handyman employed at the London address.

As Princess Haya is a member of the Jordanian diplomatic mission she will not have to pay any tax on the hundreds of millions. 

The princess would spend time with Mr Flowers at the family’s stunning 3,000-acre Suffolk home Dalham Hall (above)

Since fleeing to London, Princess Haya and her children have been living in a £100m mansion in Kensington (pictured) and country home near Egham in Surrey 

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