‘That wonderful man!’

The Duchess of York has hailed a Turkish businessman accused of fraud as a ‘wonderful man’ during a meeting at an exclusive London restaurant just weeks after he transferred nearly £250,000 into his bank account.

Remarkable footage from two events in September 2019 and the following February, when Sarah Ferguson met Selman Turk, also shows her supporting Heyman AI, one of his companies.

The digital bank won an award in November 2019 from [email protected], the Dragons’ Den-style project created by her ex-husband Prince Andrew. Nine days after that win, Mr Turk transferred a total of £750,000 to Andrew.

Although there is no evidence of wrongdoing on the part of the Duke or Duchess of York, his praise for Mr Turk and his business will intensify pressure on the couple to provide specific details about their relationship with the colored businessman as well as any financial transactions.

Mr Turk – clearly delighted with the Duchess’ support – shared the footage with friends. It was then widely circulated and The Mail on Sunday obtained the videos from Turkey-based sources.

The Duchess of York with Selman Turk for the second time in the same restaurant five months later

The Duchess of York with Selman Turk at an exclusive London restaurant in 2019. The Duchess praised Turk, who has been charged with fraud, as ‘this wonderful man’

Mr Turk (pictured) had paid £250,000 into the Duchess' bank account a few weeks earlier  The Duchess claimed the payment was for the brand ambassador's work

Mr Turk (pictured) had paid £250,000 into the Duchess’ bank account a few weeks earlier The Duchess claimed the payment was for the brand ambassador’s work

The Duke and Duchess of York (pictured) have been asked to clarify the nature of their relationship with Mr Turk

The Duke and Duchess of York (pictured) have been asked to clarify the nature of their relationship with Mr Turk

In the first nine-second clip taken while dining at a Belgravia restaurant, the 62-year-old Duchess appears to have her arm behind Mr Turk’s back as she says: “Good luck, Team Heyman. Come on, let’s do this. Let’s do this. -the, we can do it.

In the second, 21 seconds long and filmed five months later at the same high-end restaurant, she leans towards the businessman and says, “So, good luck, good luck in what you do, because I totally believe in the customer service of this wonderful man, Selman, and what you do in every aspect of what you do.

“I’m here to support and help, and whatever I can do, to take this to the next level. So good luck and well done.

A smiling Mr. Turk then turns to her admiringly and says, “Thank you.”

Details of Mr Turk’s transfer of funds to the Duke and Duchess emerged last month in documents relating to a complex fraud case in which the businessman is accused of stealing at least £40million pounds to Nebahat Isbilen, 77, the British wife of a jailed Turkish MP.

The Duke of York shaking hands with Mr Turk after his win raising his eyebrows at the Pitch@Palace Dragons' Den type mentoring network.  Nine days later Mr Turk paid the Duke £750,000

The Duke of York shaking hands with Mr Turk after his win raising his eyebrows at the [email protected] Dragons’ Den type mentoring network. Nine days later Mr Turk paid the Duke £750,000

Turkish businessman Selman Turk, 35, is said to have paid over £1million to Prince Andrew

Turkish businessman Selman Turk, 35, is said to have paid over £1million to Prince Andrew

Fearing her assets could be frozen by Turkish authorities, Ms Isbilen says she asked for Mr Turk’s help to move her fortune out of the country, but claims he stole large sums from her personal account and its own funds. Mr. Turk denies his allegations and any wrongdoing.

Documents submitted to the High Court claim that around £1.1million of the £40million allegedly misappropriated was transferred to Andrew, including the payment of £750,000 to the Duke’s account with Coutts in November 2019.

That sum – described as a ‘wedding gift‘ for Princess Beatrice – has since been repaid by Andrew, but three other payments Mr Turk made to her between October and December 2019 totaling £269,000 do not appear to be have been returned.

Ms Isbilen told the court she considered claims that the money was a wedding gift or a thank you for the prince’s help with his passport to be false.

Sarah, Duchess of York, Princess Beatrice and Prince Andrew, Duke of York pictured together at Royal Ascot in 2018

Sarah, Duchess of York, Princess Beatrice and Prince Andrew, Duke of York pictured together at Royal Ascot in 2018

Prince Andrew is said to have received payments of over £1million from Turkish businessman Mr Turk

Prince Andrew is said to have received payments of over £1million from Turkish businessman Mr Turk

A selfie taken by Selman Turk alongside Tarek Kaituni during a visit to what appears to be Frogmore House, the royal residence in Windsor Great Park, in February 2020

A selfie taken by Selman Turk alongside Tarek Kaituni during a visit to what appears to be Frogmore House, the royal residence in Windsor Great Park, in February 2020

The Duchess has previously said that a sum of £225,000 transferred to her by Mr Turk was for her work as a brand ambassador for a US solar energy company and that one of her companies was only an intermediary for payment.

The Duchess’ other cinematic flops

The Duchess of York has a habit of attracting controversy after being filmed.

She was trapped in a newspaper sting in 2010 where she allegedly offered to sell access to Prince Andrew for £500,000.

Eighteen years earlier – and having split from Andrew – she was pictured with Texas millionaire John Bryan. The footage included shots of him kissing her toes as they laze by the pool at a villa in St Tropez.

In 2009, she came under fire for The Duchess On The Estate, an ITV documentary in which she offered advice to families on a Manchester civic estate which she described as poor and run down.

It followed another TV documentary, The Duchess In Hull, in which she was accused of being ‘condescending’ for trying to persuade an obese family living on benefits to adopt a healthier lifestyle.

The Duchess even faced the prospect of jail in 2012 after she was accused of secretly filming at an orphanage in Turkey where authorities accused her of taking part in a politically motivated campaign to derail the the country’s attempt to join the EU.

Court documents filed last week claim a further £20,000 was sent to his bank account by the businessman. Court documents also claim Mr Turk made two separate payments totaling around £25,000 to Princess Eugenie.

There is no indication that the Duke, Duchess or their daughters were involved in or had any knowledge of fraudulent activity. multi-million pound legal battle with Virginia Giuffre, who accused him of sexually assaulting her when she was 17.

The Duke, who has always denied his allegations, met Ms Giuffre through pedophile financier Jeffrey Epstein and his girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell, who was convicted of sex trafficking in December.

A source close to the Duchess last night denied there was anything untoward about the two dinners with Mr Turk, or his comments in the footage.

The first meal, which involved around eight guests, took place after a mutual friend introduced her to the businessman in September 2019, the source said.

Mr Turk did not eat with the Duchess the second time and only joined her briefly as she was unable to attend a business meeting that day, the source added.

A spokesperson for the Duchess said: ‘The Duchess has been completely open about knowing Mr Turk. Her relationship with him was always business-like, and she was happy to support him, as she would with any new venture.

“She last met Mr Turk in February 2020. She was completely unaware of the allegations that have since emerged against him. She is naturally concerned by what is alleged against her.

Heyman AI, which once employed more than 100 people, ceased operations last year. Mr. Turk did not respond to requests for comment.

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