Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Saudi Prince’s Office Issues Rebuttal in Assault Case

The office of Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, a major donor to the university and one of the world’s richest men, has released evidence to refute allegations leveled against him in a recently reopened sexual assault case.

Alwaleed is accused of drugging and raping a 20-year-old model in August 2008 while sailing on his luxury yacht near the island of Ibiza in the Spanish Mediterranean, but a cache of itineraries, passport visa stamps and witness statements indicate that the prince was in France, not Ibiza, at the time in question.

The renewal of the case comes over a year after it was closed by a separate magistrate due to insufficient evidence.

According to the press release, the documents provide “clear and unmistakable proof” that Alwaleed, the nephew of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, was not in Spain in August 2008. The information also shows that the king did not charter a yacht to Spain at the time.

In the original complaint, the model, identified only as Soraya and represented by Spanish attorney Javier Beloqui, alleged that she was invited to the yacht while at a nightclub in Ibiza. Medical tests later confirmed traces of a sleep-inducing chemical in her system as well as semen. Beloqui has called for the prince to give DNA samples, but none has been provided yet.

Despite the results of the rape kit, officials found no evidence of bodily harm on the victim, prompting their previous decision to close the case.

The accuser also claimed that the dismissal of the case was due to the influence of Prince Alwaleed as a member of Saudi royalty. Prince Alwaleed has been summoned to appear before a Spanish provincial court for the continuation of court proceedings.

Prince Alwaleed is a businessman, investor and major stakeholder in News Corp. and Citigroup. Forbes ranked him the 26th richest man in the world and the richest man in the Middle East, valuing his fortune at nearly $20 billion.

In 2005, the prince donated $20 million each to Georgetown and Harvard to establish academic programs at the schools focused on Muslim-Christian interfaith dialogue.

Georgetown’s program was titled the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding and was later renamed the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal CMCU in his honor.

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