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February 2011, Week 2

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Tue, 8 Feb 2011 20:38:19 -0500
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Mubarak Family Fortune Could Reach $70Bn, Say Experts

    Egyptian President has cash in British and Swiss
    Banks plus UK And US Property

By Phillip Inmanuk
The Guardian/UK
February 4, 2011

Http://Www.Guardian.Co.Uk/World/2011/Feb/04/Hosni-Mubarak-Family-Fortune

Gamal and Hosni Mubarak are reported to have built up huge
fortunes, including properties in London.

President Hosni Mubarak's family fortune could be as much as
$70bn (£43.5bn) according to analysis by Middle East experts,
with much of his wealth in British and Swiss banks or tied up
in real estate in London, New York, Los Angeles and along
expensive tracts of the Red Sea coast.

After 30 years as president and many more as a senior
military official, Mubarak has had access to investment deals
that have generated hundreds of millions of pounds in
profits. Most of those gains have been taken offshore and
deposited in secret bank accounts or invested in upmarket
homes and hotels.

According to a report last year in the arabic newspaper Al
Khabar, Mubarak has properties in Manhattan and exclusive
Beverly Hills addresses on Rodeo Drive.

His sons, Gamal and Alaa, are also billionaires. A protest
outside Gamal's ostentatious home at 28 Wilton Place in
Belgravia, Central London, highlighted the family's appetite
for western trophy assets.

Amaney Jamal, a political science professor at Princeton
University, said the estimate of $40bn-70bn was comparable
with the vast wealth of leaders in other Gulf countries.

"The business ventures from his military and government
service accumulated to his personal wealth," she told ABC
News. "There was a lot of corruption in this regime and
stifling of public resources for personal gain.

"This is the pattern of other middle eastern dictators so
their wealth will not be taken during a transition. These
leaders plan on this."

Al Khabar said it understood the Mubaraks kept much of their
wealth offshore in the Swiss bank UBS and the Bank of
Scotland, part of Lloyds Banking Group, although this
information could be at least 10 years old.

There are only sketchy details of exactly where the Mubaraks
have generated their wealth and its final destination.

Christopher Davidson, professor of Middle East politics at
Durham University, said Mubarak, his wife, Suzanne, and two
sons were able to accumulate wealth through a number of
business partnerships with foreign investors and companies,
dating back to when he was in the military and in a position
to benefit from corporate corruption.

He said most Gulf states required foreigners give a local
business partner a 51% stake in start-up ventures. In Egypt,
the figure is commonly nearer 20%, but still gives
politicians and close allies in the military a source of huge
profits with no initial outlay and little risk.

"Almost every project needs a sponsor and Mubarak was well-
placed to take advantage of any deals on offer," he said.

"Much of his money is in Swiss bank accounts and London
property. These are the favourites of middle eastern leaders
and there is no reason to think Mubarak is any different.
Gamal's Wilton Place home is likely to be the tip of the
iceberg."

Al Khabar named a series of major western companies that,
partnered with the Mubarak family, generated an estimated
$15m a year in profits.

Aladdin Elaasar, author of The Last Pharaoh: Mubarak and the
Uncertain Future of Egypt in the Obama Age, said the Mubaraks
own several residences in Egypt, some inherited from previous
presidents and the monarchy, and others the president has
commissioned.

Hotels and land around the Sharm el-Sheikh tourist resort are
also a source of Mubarak family wealth.

___________________________________________

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