Posts Tagged ‘Timur Kulibayev’

Andrew – Prince of beggars

March 21, 2011

The Telegraph does not much like Prince Andrew and his venal ways. The Duke of York receives a £249,000 annuity from the Queen.  Last year the prince spent £620,000 as a trade envoy, including £154,000 on hotels, food and hospitality and £465,000 on travel.

Randy Andy

First there was the sale of his home in Berkshire to Kazakhstan president’s billionaire son-in-law Timur Kulibayev, for £15 million: £3 million over the asking price, although there hadn’t been a single prospective buyer in three years. It now sits unoccupied and in mounting disrepair, suggesting that the property, curiously, isn’t particularly essential to Mr Kulibayev’s portfolio.

There is the Duke’s 16-year friendship with Jeffrey Epstein, an American billionaire who was jailed for 18 months in 2008 for soliciting under-age prostitutes. The Duke – who was snapped in 2001 with a cheery arm around Virginia Roberts, Epstein’s 17-year-old “masseuse” – was also photographed strolling in Central Park with Epstein last December, after the latter was released from jail. Shortly afterwards, Epstein stepped in to pay off £15,000 of the Duchess of York’s debts, a matter which the Duke had reportedly been finessing during the trip.

The Duke of York has been engulfed in a new “cash-for-favours” row after a close friend paid off £50,000 of his ex-wife’s debts. David Rowland, a financier once described as “shady” in Parliament, gave the sum to the Duchess of York’s former press spokesman Kate Waddington, whom the Duchess owed in the region of £85,000.

In May 2010, the Duchess of York, the Prince’s ex-wife, was filmed by a News of the World reporter claiming that Prince Andrew had agreed that if she were to receive £500,000, he, the Prince, would meet the donor and pass on useful top level business contacts. She was filmed receiving, in cash, $40,000 as a down payment. The Prince’s entourage denied he knew of the situation

It would seem that one part of his activities as the UK’s Trade envoy is soliciting money from rather dubious people for the repayment of his ex-wife’s debts. She is also not slow to sell access to him – for whatever it is worth. No doubt there is a point of view that for this scion of the House of Windsor to do his utmost to repay his ex-wife’s debts is an extremely honourable thing to do.

His elder brother and heir to the throne is the epitome of silliness and no great credit to his House either but at least he does not seem to be venal.

I think we are half way up now.

Neither up nor down

Oh, The grand old Duke of York,
He had ten thousand men;
He marched them up to the top of the hill,
And he marched them down again.

And when they were up, they were up,
And when they were down, they were down,
And when they were only half-way up,
They were neither up nor down.

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