Yasir Al-Rumayyan – the governor of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and the chairman of LIV Golf – could be facing a $74 million lawsuit, according to a report in The Athletic.
Legal papers that were sent to Al-Rumayyan at various PIF addresses in Saudi Arabia, New York and London (as well as the stadium of PIF-owned Newcastle United in England) allege the 53-year-old “carried out the instructions” of current Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman with “the malicious intent” of “harming, silencing and ultimately destroying” the family of the Kingdom’s former intelligence chief, Dr. Saad Aljabri. The Aljabri family is seeking $74 million in damages.
Aljabri was a top aide to former Saudi Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, who was removed from his post in 2017 and has been in detention since 2020. At the time, Reuters reported bin Nayef had been forced to step aside “in an effective palace coup,” but a Saudi official said the claim was “unfounded and untrue in addition to being nonsense.”
From The Athletic:
The claim Aljabri hopes to bring against Al-Rumayyan will, if the Canadian court grants permission, allege that defendants including Al-Rumayyan were “directly involved” in a three-and-a-half-year campaign between June 2017 and January 2021 to pursue the family of Saad Aljabri, who is a former top aide to Prince Mohammed bin Nayef.
Why a Canadian court? Aljabri fled Saudi Arabia for Turkey in 2017 and then made his way to Canada. Three years ago, Saudi state-owned firms claimed in a Canadian lawsuit that Aljabri had embezzled hundreds of millions of dollars of state funds, an accusation that Aljabri has denied.
The documents sent to Al-Rumayyan this month ask the Canadian court for permission for Al-Rumayyan and others to not only be added to an existing court case, but for a new claim to be brought against them as well. The PIF and board member Mohammed Al Al-Sheik have also been listed as intended co-defendants in the legal papers.
The potential lawsuit comes at a bad time for both LIV Golf and the PGA Tour. The Saudi-backed circuit is less than a month from hosting its first event of 2024 in Mexico and the Tour is currently engaged in conversations with the PIF and outside investors to form a for-profit entity, PGA Tour Enterprises. The PIF is governed by Al-Rumayyan and bin Salman is its chairman. Al-Rumayyan was also originally tabbed to be the chairman of the new entity’s board if an agreement is…