A member of Bahrain’s royal family has won a High Court case against an Egyptian entrepreneur who sued him over an alleged deal for access to some of the most prominent names in Bollywood.
The case stems from a lawsuit from Egyptian national Ahmed Adel Abdallah, who sued Sheikh Hamad Isa Ali Al-Khalifa after claiming that he agreed to pay $1.5 million each time Abdallah a meeting with famous Indian film stars, such as Shah Rukh Khan.
The deal allegedly includes a $500,000 bonus payment for every third meeting. In total, Abdallah sued the Sheikh for $33.5 million and claimed that he had been asked to set up meetings with 26 celebrities, but that the Sheikh reneged on the deal after five meetings for which he had received $3 million.
In court, Sheikh Hamad denied there was ever a legal agreement and said he believed that Abdallah was motivated by friendship, rather than any contractual business agreement.
On Friday, the High Court dismissed the case, with the judge saying that there “were too many inconsistencies and improbabilities for the case advanced by Mr. Ahmed to be accepted” and that the Egyptian was a “very frustrating witness”, according to a report in the Financial Times.
In a witness statement before the court, Sheikh Hamad said that he believes Abdallah saw in him “an opportunity to make a lot of quickly for himself” and that he delivered payments because of “an overriding desire to make people happy by bestowing money and gifts on them.”
Among the actors he met were Shah Rukh Khan, Aditya Roy Kapoor, Salman Khan and Ranveer Singh, according to court documents.
“I am very pleased with today’s judgment. It was with a heavy heart that I was forced to defend myself against this claim, since I had considered Mr Ahmed to be a friend whom I trusted, and had always treated him with generosity and kindness,” Sheikh Hamad said in a statement following the decision.
Abdallah’s lawyers have vowed to appeal the court’s ruling.