One of my favorite facts about King Abdullah II of Jordan is that he’s obsessed with Star Trek. Like, extremely obsessed. American diplomats were well aware of his obsession when he visited America in 1996. That was three years before he became king of one of the most geographically significant countries in the world. For your information, Jordan isn’t exactly brimming with oil like Saudi Arabia, Qatar or Bahrain. Jordan – about the size of Idaho – is one of the West’s most important allies as it is friendly to Western countries, passionate about defeating terrorists, and literally on a border between Israel and Saudi Arabia and Israel and the Iraq sandwiched is a different border.
To impress their visitor, American advisors told the Crown Prince that he could see the set of Star Trek: Voyager, where the second season was being filmed.
Abdullah was delighted.
And that was just the beginning of the surprise. The diplomats actually arranged for the show’s producers to give the great-grandson of the founder of modern day Jordan a quick on-screen speaking role. When he got to the set he was given a uniform and a few lines to memorize.
Abdullah’s cameo takes place in the opening scene of Season 2, Episode 20, “Investigations”. Unfortunately, his speaking roles had to be deleted from the final version, as Abdullah does not belong to the Screen Actor’s Guild. We’re sorry! No exceptions to union rules, not even for visiting crown princes. Here is a photo of the then 34-year-old Crown Prince in his sole IMDB acting credit:
The King’s Star Trek cameo has absolutely nothing to do with the following article. I just can’t think or talk about Abdullah without remembering this anecdote.
Today we are talking about King Abdullah thanks to the so-called “Pandora Papers”. The Pandora Papers leaked 12 million files from 14 international financial companies that have transacted for some of the richest people in the world.
Yesterday we broke down how the Pandora Papers revealed that an alleged girlfriend / baby mum of Vladimir Putin has allegedly amassed $ 100 million in assets over the past 20 years. Her assets are said to include a multi-million dollar apartment in Monaco as well as stakes in a major bank and a luxury ski resort.
Today, Thanks again to The Guardian’s coverage, we learn about King Abdullah’s secret personal real estate portfolio.
To be clear, none of the King’s American home purchases appear to be in any way illegal or inappropriate. As King of Jordan, Abdullah is rich. Extremely rich. We estimate his net worth to be at least $ 750 million.
According to the files reviewed by the Guardian, King Abdullah has used more than 30 British Virgin Islands-based mailbox companies in the past twenty years to move $ 100 million in real estate in the United States and $ 40 million in personal property in the United Kingdom Amassing millions of dollars.
According to the leaked documents, Abdullah paid a total of $ 16 million for four apartments in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington DC between 2012 and 2014. His son, Crown Prince Hussein, was then attending Georgetown University. Between 2005 and 2011 he bought five luxury properties in and around London.
But his most lenient purchases were made in California.
Triple Mansion Malibu Compound
According to the leaked documents, the king is said to have spent $ 70 million between 2014 and 2017 to buy three adjoining villas in Malibu. He bought his first property in 2014 through a mailbox company called Nabisco Holdings. The purchase price was $ 33.5 million. He then bought the houses next door with two different letter box companies (all three are based in the British Virgin Islands). In 2015, he paid $ 12.5 million for the second and in 2017, he paid $ 23 million for the third.
I found three houses in a drone video that was filmed over the area known as the Point Dume. This video was shot in 2015. I queued the video up to the 3:23 mark. According to reports, Abdullah owns the three villas that you see closest to the undeveloped cliff:
In the six years since the above video was shot, it appears Abdullah has razed the villa closest to the cliff and replaced it with a modern new build. I think the other two villas are roughly the same shape when he bought them.
The video below from the Washington Post today shows a quick drone shot of what the area looks like today. I queued the video up to the 5:51 mark:
In response to the Pandora Papers’ revelations, a Jordanian official issued the following statement:
“It is no secret that His Majesty owns a number of apartments and residences in the United States and the United Kingdom. This is neither unusual nor inappropriate. His Majesty uses these properties on official visits and receives officials and foreign dignitaries there. The king and his family members stay in some of these properties even on private visits…. All allegations relating this private property to public funds or support are baseless and deliberate attempts to misrepresent facts … All public finance and international support are subject to professional scrutiny and their allocations are fully considered by the government and donor organizations.“