Fayed, Mohamed al-

▪ 1998

      Although frustrated in his efforts to be accepted as a British citizen, Egyptian-born billionaire Mohamed al-Fayed continued to play an influential—and highly controversial—role in Great Britain in 1997. Fayed's public feuds with the British establishment were credited with helping secure the election victory of Tony Blair's Labour Party and wrecking the careers of several Conservative politicians. Even the British royalty was entangled with Fayed when it was reported on August 31 that Diana, princess of Wales, had died in a car crash alongside Fayed's son Emad ("Dodi"), with whom she had been romantically linked; that evening the couple had dined at the Fayed-owned Ritz Hotel in Paris. The controversy sparked by the incident had not quieted by year's end. In December it was reported that Fayed was launching an investigation into the crash and had hired a former French police chief to head it. Days later Diana's family announced plans to sue Fayed for at least $13.3 million over the princess's death, since the car in which she died was driven by a Ritz employee, Henri Paul, who also was killed. Tests confirmed that Paul had been drunk at the time of the accident.

      Fayed was born on Jan. 27, 1933, in Alexandria, where he founded his own company in 1956. From the 1960s he lived primarily in the United Kingdom. Among the vast holdings he had acquired were the famous Harrods department store, the venerable humour magazine Punch, and the Parisian villa of the late duke and duchess of Windsor, the contents of which were slated for auction in 1998.

      Fayed's contentious relationship with the British establishment was well documented. In a rancorous takeover in 1985, he beat out mining giant Lonrho to purchase the House of Fraser, the holding company that controlled Harrods. Spurred on by Lonrho owner Roland ("Tiny") Rowland, the government accused Fayed of having misrepresented his ability to finance the takeover. Though Fayed proved his solvency, his wealth continued to be suspect in some quarters, and his name did not appear on The Sunday Times annual list of the wealthiest people in Britain until 1997. Fayed's relationship with the establishment was further strained by his involvement in the "cash-for-questions" scandal that arose in 1994 after Fayed named ministers who had accepted money from him in return for tabling parliamentary questions on his behalf. After the disclosures were made, two junior ministers resigned and a new committee was established to monitor standards at Westminster. Fayed's 1995 attempt to buy London News Radio and his 1996 bid to buy The Observer also attracted considerable publicity.

      Though fallout from the deaths of Diana and Dodi Fayed was sure to continue in 1998, one bright spot could emerge on the horizon for Fayed in the form of a coveted British passport. Fayed's longtime hopes to become a British citizen were revived in December when the government announced that it would withdraw its appeal against a 1995 court decision that nullified earlier refusals of citizenship that had gone unexplained. This paved the way for Fayed to reapply for citizenship and to be given reasons for any rejection.

TOM MICHAEL

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Mohamed Al Fayed — Mohamed Abdel Moneim Fayed ou Mohamed Al Fayed (en arabe : محمد الفايد), né le 27 janvier 1933 à Bakos (باكوس), un village situé à l est d Alexandrie en Égypte, est un homme d affaire. Il est, entre autres, propriétaire du grand magasin… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Mohamed al-Fayed — Mohamed Abdel Moneim Fayed ou Mohamed Al Fayed (en arabe : محمد الفايد), né le 27 janvier 1933 à Bakos (باكوس), un village situé à l est d Alexandrie en Égypte, est un homme d affaire. Il est, entre autres, propriétaire du grand magasin… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Mohamed Al Fayed — (arabisch ‏محمد الفايد‎, eigentlich Mohamed Abdel Moneim Fayed) ‎ (* 27. Januar 1933 in Alexandria) ist ein ägyptischer Unternehmer und Milliardär. Er ist unter anderem Eigner des Kaufhauses Harrods in London, des Londoner Fußballclubs FC Fulham… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Mohamed Al-Fayed — محمد الفايد Fayed in 2011 Born Mohamed Abdel Moneim Al Fayed January 27, 1933 (1933 01 27) (age 78) El Gomorok, Alexandria …   Wikipedia

  • Mohamed Al-Fayed — Mohamed Abdel Moneim Fayed ou Mohamed Al Fayed (en arabe : محمد الفايد), né le 27 janvier 1933 à Bakos (باكوس), un village situé à l est d Alexandrie en Égypte, est un homme d affaires. Il est, entre autres, propriétaire du club de football… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Mohamed Al-Fayed — Mohamed Fayed Figura de cera de Mohamed Al Fayed dando la bienvenida a sus clientes Nacimiento …   Wikipedia Español

  • Fayed — steht für: Dodi Al Fayed (1955–1997), Filmproduzent und Geschäftsmann Guillermo Fayed (* 1985), französischer Skirennläufer Mohamed Al Fayed (* 1933), ägyptischer Unternehmer und Milliardär Fayed (Ort), Ort am Sues Kanal in Ägypten …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Mohamed — ist als Variante des Namens Mohammed (Name) der Familienname folgender Personen: Abdisamad „SpawN“ Mohamed (* 1985), schwedischer E Sportler Abdullah Mohamed Ahmed Mohamed (* 1989), bahrainischer Tennisspieler Abdullatif Mohamed (* 1976),… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Mohamed Al-Fayed — Wachsfigur von Al Fayed im Londoner Harrods Mohamed Al Fayed (arabisch ‏محمد الفايد‎, eigentlich Mohamed Abdel Moneim Fayed) (* 27. Januar 1929 oder 1933[1] in …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Fayed, Emad Mohamed al- — ▪ 1998       Egyptian born producer of motion pictures, including The World According to Garp and the Oscar winning Chariots of Fire, and playboy son of multimillionnaire Mohamed al Fayed, the owner of Harrods department stores. Fayed was killed… …   Universalium

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