Saudi princess walks free after French court finds her guilty of ordering her bodyguard to beat up a plumber at her Paris apartment
- Hassa bint Salman, 42, found guilty of ordering bodyguard Rani Saidi to beat up plumber Ashraf Eid at her apartment in Paris in 2016
- Hassa flew into a rage when Ashraf accidentally took her picture as he photographed a sink that he had been ordered to fix
- At one point she allegedly yelled: ‘Kill him, the dog, he doesn’t deserve to live’
- She was sentenced in absentia after failing to turn up to a single day of her trial
A sister of Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been handed a 10-month suspended sentence after she ordered her bodyguard to beat a plumber at her luxury apartment in Paris.
Hassa bint Salman, 42, was also handed a £10,000 fine on Thursday in absetia after she failed to turn up for a single day of her trial, which got underway in July.
The court heard how Hassa ordered bodyguard Rani Saidi to beat up plumber Ashraf Eid after he was seen taking pictures inside her home in September 2016.
Hassa bint Salman (pictured), a daughter of King Salman, was charged with instructing her bodyguard to beat up a plumber
Saidi, who was the only person involved who showed up to court, was handed an eight-month suspended sentence and a 5,000-euro fine, in line with the recommendations of prosecutors.
Hassa’s sentence was heavier than demanded by prosecutors, who had sought a six-month suspended sentence and a fine of 5,000 euros ($5,480).
Eid was working on the seventh floor of the luxury apartment block owned by the Saudi royals on Avenue Foch, Paris’s most exclusive address, when he was called to the fifth floor to repair a damaged wash basin.
He took pictures of the bathroom which he told investigators he needed to carry out his work.
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.
Hassa bint Salman is the sister of powerful crown prince Mohammed bin Salman (left). Hassa She is being represented by Emmanuel Moyne (pictured right)
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.’
The case is the latest blow to the image of the kingdom, where Prince Mohammed sparked hopes of major social and economic reform when he was elevated to crown prince in 2017.
But his reputation was badly damaged by the murder of dissident writer Jamal Khashoggi at Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul last year.
He is also seen as the driving force in the Saudi military intervention in Yemen, where tens of thousands have died.
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