Qatari sheikh who ran over and killed pensioner in his purple Rolls-Royce sued for £200,000

Sheikh Hassan Nasser Al-Thani was given a suspended prison sentence for causing death by careless driving, but is now being sued for £200,000 by the brother of the victim - Ian West/PA
Sheikh Hassan Nasser Al-Thani was given a suspended prison sentence for causing death by careless driving, but is now being sued for £200,000 by the brother of the victim - Ian West/PA

A Qatari sheikh who ran over and killed a pensioner while speeding in his purple Rolls-Royce Wraith is being sued for £200,000.

Sheikh Hassan Nasser Al-Thani hit 66-year-old Charles Roberts while driving at more than 52mph in a 30mph speed limit in Mayfair on Aug 22 2019.

The 66-year-old died at the scene. The sheikh was later handed an eight-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, and banned from driving in the UK for three years by a judge at the Old Bailey, after pleading guilty to causing death by careless driving.

Now the administrator of Mr Roberts' estate is suing Al-Thani in the High Court on behalf of Peter Roberts, the brother of the victim, demanding that the Qatari royal pay him over £200,000 compensation.

The Old Bailey heard in Oct 2021 that the sheikh was driving in Duke of Wellington Place when he hit Mr Roberts, a retired Network Rail signalling manager from Harpenden, Hertfordshire, who had been walking near Hyde Park.

Judge Richard Marks, The Common Serjeant of London, heard he had been briefly driving at 52-54mph in a 30mph zone.

The judge said he was “satisfied” that had Al-Thani been driving “in or around” the speed limit, Charles Roberts’ death would have been avoided.

But he spared him from jail after Simon Csoka KC, Al-Thani’s barrister, said his client suffered from a range of “serious” health issues - such as morbid obesity and sleep apnoea - and would have been at risk from Covid in prison.

“I accept, and this is important, that your excessive speed and carelessness occurred only over a matter of a few seconds," the judge added.

Charles Roberts died after being hit by Sheikh Hassan Nasser Al-Thani in Mayfair, London - Central News/Faceook
Charles Roberts died after being hit by Sheikh Hassan Nasser Al-Thani in Mayfair, London - Central News/Faceook

In documents lodged at the High Court, lawyers representing Terence Conybeare, the administrator of the victim’s estate, said Charles Roberts looked after his vulnerable brother and that Peter Roberts therefore needs to be compensated by the sheikh for the death.

"Peter Roberts was supported by the deceased and is now supported by his cousins who have power of attorney to deal with his financial affairs on his behalf," said the lawyers.

The administrator is claiming damages under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976 "on behalf of the dependent of the deceased consequent to his death which occurred on Aug 22 2019 on Duke of Wellington Place, Mayfair, London, as a result of the negligent driving management and/or control of a motor vehicle driven by the defendant”.

The defence of the sheikh, whose address is given on the court documents as Prince of Wales Terrace, Kensington, London, was not available from the court.