A Cabinet minister has admitted it was a “bit unusual” after Prince Charles accepted large cash donations from a Qatari sheikh.
The Prince of Wales is said to have accepted three separate cash payments from a former prime minister of the Gulf state totalling more than £2.5million, which were then handed to his charity.
There is no suggestion of any wrongdoing but the details have raised further questions about the judgment of the future king.
Clarence House said the donations were “passed immediately” to one of the prince’s charities and that “appropriate governance” was carried out.
Quizzed about the payments on LBC this morning, Environment Secretary George Eustice said: “My understanding is this was immediately passed on to the charity, declared and checked in the usual way. Of course it’s a bit unusual to have such a large amount of cash.”
He said the Charity Commission is looking into the incident.
Asked by LBC host Nick Ferrari if Conservative Campaign HQ would accept similar payments, Mr Eustice added: “Well, look probably not but we’ve got very strict regulations as well on political donations, and they all have to be declared.”
A Charity Commission spokeswoman said: “We will review the information to determine whether there is any role for the commission in this matter.”
The heir to the throne is alleged to have personally accepted the cash donations for The Prince of Wales’s Charitable Fund between 2011 and 2015 from Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani, who was prime minister of Qatar between 2007 and 2013.
The Sunday Times reported that on one occasion the cash was stuffed into Fortnum & Mason bags.