Britain’s Prince Andrew, the troubled son of Queen Elizabeth II, was recently affiliated with a trial over fraud involving a Turkish man and the wife of a man convicted of terrorism in Turkey, who sought the latter’s assistance to secure a U.K. passport.
The prince received substantial sums of money from a Turkish businessperson identified as Selman Türk, who was later accused of fraud by Nebahat Işbilen, court documents show. Nebahat Işbilen is the wife of Ilhan Işbilen, a former Turkish lawmaker who was sentenced to aggravated life imprisonment two years ago for his ties to the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ).
Andrew is not himself accused of wrongdoing, but the allegations bring unwelcome new publicity after he settled a U.S. civil claim for sexual assault.
Nebahat Işbilen alleges that Türk told her in November 2019 that she had to offer a “gift” of 750,000 pounds (around $983,000) for Andrew’s help to obtain a U.K. passport. The documents from a High Court civil claim brought by Işbilen in London conclude that the purported passport offer was a ruse by Türk, newspaper reports said Friday.
Andrew has repaid the 750,000 pounds, the Daily Telegraph and Daily Mail said. He declined to comment on the case or to explain to Işbilen’s lawyers the nature of his relationship with Türk.
The Duke of York’s ex-wife Sarah received at least 225,000 pounds in return for acting as a “brand ambassador” for one of Türk’s companies, the Telegraph said. A spokesperson for Sarah said she was “completely unaware of the allegations that have since emerged against Mr. Türk.”
Andrew and Sarah have long been dogged by accusations of poor judgment in their financial dealings and relationships with wealthy acquaintances.
Işbilen says she turned to Türk for help to get her fortune out of Turkey after her husband was jailed. She claims that Türk misappropriated around $50 million. He denies it. The case has yet to come to trial, but preliminary rulings have been published by the judge, which revealed the involvement of Andrew and Sarah.
Andrew, 62, has rarely been seen since a disastrous 2019 interview in which he defended his friendship with Jeffrey Epstein, an American financier and convicted sex offender who killed himself in prison. But he appeared in public on Tuesday accompanied by his mother at a televised memorial service for his late father, Prince Philip. It was his first public appearance since settling the assault case brought in New York by Virginia Giuffre in February. In January, the queen stripped him of his honorary military titles, effectively removing him from any official role.
Işbilen, a member of a family who founded prominent personal care and hygiene product company Evyap, married Ilhan Işbilen while both were in their 60s, allegedly upon the “instruction” of Fetullah Gülen, leader of FETÖ. Nebahat Işbilen’s name had also came up in the notorious Panama Papers, which showed she transferred a large amount of money to offshore accounts in the Virgin Islands before the Turkish courts ordered a freeze on the assets of the couple following the FETÖ investigation.