Second employee 'saw cash meant for Hamilton'

A SECOND employee of Mohamed Al Fayed told the High Court yesterday she saw the Harrods owner put cash into envelopes for Neil Hamilton.

Iris Bond, a secretary, claimed on the 10th day of the former Tory minister's libel action over Mr Fayed's "cash for questions" allegations that she twice saw her employer of 21 years put pounds 2,500 in envelopes for Mr Hamilton.

Ms Bond's evidence followed the testimony of Mr Fayed's former personal assistant, Alison Bozek, who told the jury she saw him put cash into an envelope for Mr Hamilton and twice herself put thousands into envelopes for him to collect.

Both women rejected an accusation from Desmond Browne QC, for Mr Hamilton, that they had entered into a criminal conspiracy to support Mr Fayed.

Ms Bond said she remembered one occasion when Mr Hamilton telephoned - after he and his wife had stayed at the Paris Ritz in September 1987. "Mr Fayed said, 'He is a greedy bastard. I know one of the things he's going to come for - he's going to want money'." She said that Mr Fayed then put pounds 2,500 in a white envelope.

On another occasion, Ms Bond said, Mr Fayed telephoned her and asked her to bring over pounds 5,000 in cash to Harrods, some of which was for "your friend Neil". Ms Bond, who described herself as a "lapsed Conservative", said Mr Fayed used to "kid" her about Mr Hamilton.

On a third occasion, she said, Mr Fayed gave her a brown envelope, which he asked her to leave downstairs for Mr Hamilton. "I was in the office when I saw Mr Fayed put the money in it - one bundle of pounds 2,500," she said.

George Carman QC, for Mr Fayed, asked for her reaction to Mr Browne's suggestion that she had entered into a criminal conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and commit perjury for Mr Fayed. Ms Bond said: "I'd say it is outrageous."

She told the court she had never been afraid of her boss. "I will say that he's not a saint. He is capable of eruptions. He can have a bad temper. But he forgets things very quickly. He doesn't bear personal grudges."

Mr Hamilton, the former Conservative MP for Tatton, is suing Mr Fayed over a Channel 4 Dispatches programme in January 1997, in which he claimed that Mr Hamilton had demanded and accepted cash payments, gift vouchers and a free holiday in the Paris Ritz in return for asking parliamentary questions on behalf of Harrods. Mr Fayed denies libel and pleads justification.

The trial continues today.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Web Developer - PHP

£17000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity is now ...

Recruitment Genius: Account Executive - Graduate / Entry Level

£22000 - £27500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This digital advertising infras...

Recruitment Genius: European Sales Director - Aerospace Cable & Wire

£100000 - £125000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As a top tier supplier to the...

Recruitment Genius: Digital Project Manager

£17100 - £22900 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the North West's leading...

Day In a Page

On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

Saving Private Brandt

A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral