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Saudi princess found guilty of ordering bodyguard to hit craftsman

September 12, 2019
Saudi princess found guilty of ordering bodyguard to hit craftsman

Rani Saïdi, center, a bodyguard of Saudi princess Hassa bint Salman, leaving the courthouse in Paris after his conviction on Thursday. PHOTO: ASSOCIATED PRESS

A French court on Thursday handed a 10-month suspended sentence to a sister of the Saudi crown prince over the beating of a workman at a luxury residence in Paris in 2016.

Hassa bint Salman, a daughter of King Salman and sister of the powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, had been charged with instructing her bodyguard to beat up a plumber, reported The Guardian.

Tried in absentia and the target of an arrest warrant since December 2017, she was also ordered by the Paris court to pay a $11,000 fine.

The princess, 42, had never shown up at the trial, which got underway in July.

The punishment was heavier than demanded by prosecutors, who had sought a six-month suspended sentence and a fine of $5,480.

The princess, whose brother is known by his initials MBS and is seen as the kingdom’s de facto ruler, was accused of instructing her bodyguard Rani Saidi to beat up Ashraf Eid after he was seen taking pictures inside her home in September 2016.

She had been charged with complicity in an act of intentional violence, complicity in illegal confinement and complicity in theft.

Eid claims that the princess flew into a rage after he caught her reflection in a mirror on camera. She called in her bodyguard, who allegedly beat him.

AFP reported that Eid claimed he was also tied up and ordered to kiss the feet of the princess, who is lionised in the Saudi state-run media for her charity work and women’s rights campaigning.

The plumber claimed that he was allowed to leave the apartment only after several hours, during which his phone was destroyed, and that at one point the princess shouted: “Kill him, the dog, he doesn’t deserve to live.”

With additional input from AFP. Follow SAMAA English on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.


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