Late Saudi King's Secret London Wife Wins Pounds 20 Million for Life of Luxury

The secret wife of the late king of Saudi Arabia has won pounds 20million in a London court to allow her to maintain her \"lavish lifestyle\".

Published: 04th November 2015 09:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 04th November 2015 09:00 AM   |  A+A-

The secret wife of the late king of Saudi Arabia has won pounds 20million in a London court to allow her to maintain her "lavish lifestyle".

Her tale of a Christian teenager from Palestine who began a relationship with a future monarch and ended up a Scientologist in Britain was "bizarre" the judge said.

But he ruled that a promise made at the Dorchester hotel 12 years ago must be kept.

Junan Harb, now 68, told the High Court that she had married the future King Fahd when she was 19 and he was a prince. She had been kept in a harem at the Al-Sharafiya Palace, Jeddah, for two years, where she was prohibited from having children and was taken to casinos every night, she said. But she was forced to leave by his disapproving family in 1970, before he ascended the throne. She then moved to London.

It was clear that the late king made "substantial payments" to Mrs Harb during his lifetime, Mr Justice Peter Smith said in his judgement yesterday.

After the alleged marriage, he opened a bank account for her with pounds 25,000 of "spending money" which was regularly topped up and was followed by pounds 5?million to keep quiet.

He also paid for Mrs Harb to buy two London properties, one a pounds 1?million flat in Chelsea. She claims he promised to provide for her for her lifetime.

"It is fair to say that Mrs Harb maintained a high maintenance lifestyle as she says, to which she had become accustomed whilst being supported by the late king," said the judge. She began a pounds 400?million maintenance claim against King Fahd in 2004, but when he died the next year aged 82, the High Court ruled the claim had died with him.

But Mrs Harb claimed separately that at a meeting in June 2003, at the Dorchester, the king's son, Prince Abdul Aziz, had agreed to honour his father's promise and give her pounds 12?million along with two properties.

The judge ordered the prince, who refused to come to court to fight the claim, to pay legal costs estimated at more than pounds 1?million, damages of pounds 12?million with interest of pounds 3.25?million and to hand over property worth around pounds 5?million.

"I am very, very happy," said Mrs Harb as she left court yesterday (Tuesday). "This has been 12 years of misery for me. I am very happy with British justice otherwise they wanted me to go to Saudi Arabia where they could have stoned me. I am very relieved and only wish the Prince could have honoured what his father wanted and stopped delaying things. He is just being very mean."

The judge said that Mrs Harb had used pounds 3?million of the money originally given to her to pay off debts including an pounds 85,000 gambling debt, and then gambled or spent the balance within two years on her "lavish lifestyle." He said that while her evidence was at times "bizarre", the truth or otherwise of many of her claims was irrelevant. What mattered was that he believed "she is telling the truth" over the 2003 agreement with the prince.

Ms Harb has previously threatened to "spill the beans" on her relationship with the late king and has written two books which have not been published.

Now a British citizen, Mrs Harb has become a Scientologist and fashion designer. In an earlier interview, she said: "What's pounds 12m? It's their laundry bill every week."

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