Prince Jefri, the younger brother of the Sultan of Brunei, is on the run rather than face jail for refusing to hand over over £3 billion (RM15.1 billion) of assets to the Sultanate.

Reports said the flamboyant prince was issued with a warrant of arrest by a British judge on June 11 for failing to turn up for a five-day hearing for contempt of court.

The Times reported that:

Prince JefriPrince Jefri, who denied any wrongdoing and said he had authority to use state funds, took his case to the Privy Council in London last year but lost.

Brunei sources say that he has since surrendered a few diamonds but held on to other assets. Brunei has adopted a hard line, applying to the High Court in London to commit the Prince to prison for contempt of court.

Friends of Prince Jefri are shocked at what they see as the harshness of the Sultan in attempting to get his youngest brother locked up.

But legal sources have always emphasised that these actions were being taken by the nation’s investment vehicle rather than the Sultan. [...]

The Prince’s friends said that Brunei’s attempt to get him jailed was “purely vindictive”, serving no purpose “other than to extract punitive revenge on your brother”.

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