Prince Charles's closest aide Michael Fawcett, who handles his numerous charitable initiatives, has resigned from his position after a leaked letter implicated him in a "cash for honors" scandal.
As per the reports in the Sunday Times and Mail on Sunday, the royal aide allegedly offered to help secure an honour for a Saudi tycoon who made several huge donations to Prince Charles's charity. The billionaire, Mahfouz Marei Mubarak bin Mahfouz, was made an honorary CBE (Most Excellent Order of the British Empire), in late 2016.
A letter allegedly written by Fawcett to Mahbouz at the time said that the royal charity would be "happy and willing" to use its influence to help him in his quest for a knighthood and British citizenship. After being confronted about the letter by journalists this weekend, Fawcett quit his position as chief executive of Prince Charles's umbrella group of charities "The Prince's Foundation."
A statement from the foundation said that Fawcett has "offered to step down temporarily" while an investigation takes place. Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Dr. Bin Mahfouz denied the allegations of any outside involvement in his CBE status, saying that the business had "not had personal or direct communication to either request, influence or make any arrangements regarding citizenship or knighthood with Mr. Fawcett, or anyone connected to HRH The Prince of Wales or The Prince's Foundation."
This is not the first time that Fawcett, who began his service to the British Royal Family in 1981 as a footman to Queen Elizabeth II and later moved to Prince Charles's household as his valet, has had to quit his royal duties due to accusations surrounding him. He has previously resigned twice from Clarence House, once in 1998 after various staff complained about his bullying, and again in 2003 following a report that identified mismanagement in the household.
However, he managed to return to the heir apparent's inner circle on both occasions. The Prince of Wales reportedly once said about him, "I can manage without just about anyone, except for Michael."