The following Press Release was issued in the Middle East region by Kendall Freeman on 30 July 2007.|
Sheikh Khalid Bin Mahfouz receives comprehensive apology from Cambridge University Press
Saudi businessman Sheikh Khalid Bin Mahfouz has accepted a comprehensive apology together with substantial damages from well known publishers Cambridge University Press in settlement of a libel action following publication of a 2006 book Alms for Jihad, it was announced in the High Court in London today.
Sheikh Khalid, for many years Chairman of Saudi Arabia's National Commercial Bank, commenced libel proceedings against the Cambridge University Press following the publication of Alms for Jihad, which made a series of allegations including that Sheikh Khalid and his family had supported Osama Bin Laden and funded terrorist activities. In today's hearing at the High Court before Mr Justice Eady, the company accepted that there was no truth whatsoever in any of these allegations. Cambridge University Press acknowledged that neither Sheikh Khalid nor any of his family had ever supported or funded terrorist activities and that the allegations made in the Book were wholly untrue and unjustified. Sincerely apologising for any distress and embarrassment that these false statements caused to Sheikh Khalid and his family, Cambridge University Press's solicitor confirmed that the company was undertaking to the Court not to repeat the allegations. Cambridge University Press is taking the almost unprecedented step of pulping all unsold copies of the Book and writing to over 200 libraries worldwide which carry the book telling them of the settlement and asking them to insert an erratum sheet within the book, or if they are not prepared to do that, to withdraw the book from their shelves. The company will be publishing a detailed apology on its website, and paying substantial damages as well as making a contribution to Sheikh Khalid's legal costs.
Laurence Harris, partner at Kendall Freeman, solicitors acting for Sheikh Khalid said: "Sheikh Khalid welcomes this settlement. When this book was published Sheikh Khalid had no choice but to issue proceedings to put to rest these very serious and false allegations. He is pleased that Cambridge University Press have recognised there was no truth whatsoever in the allegations, and that his reputation has been vindicated. He will be donating the substantial damages and costs paid by Cambridge University Press to UNICEF".
Letter received by Sheikh Khalid bin Mahfouz from Cambridge University Press on 30 July 2007