Dodi's girl-crazy double caused half the trouble

Maurice Chittenden, Sunday Times, 17 August 1997 pages 1, 3

IF romancing Diana, Princess of Wales, and fending off his former girlfriend Kelly Fisher were not difficult enough, Dodi Fayed faces double trouble. An impostor has been seducing beautiful women and running up huge debts while pretending to be the Harrods heir.

The fake Fayed has offered film parts to Jodie Foster and Brooke Shields, dated stars of The Phantom of the Opera and broken off relationships with singers. Last night he was behind bars in Toronto after being jailed for two years for impersonation. He faces new charges of fraud across America after failing to pay hotel bills or return hire cars.

Dodi Fayed believes that Mohamed Sead, a former merchant seaman - who at times has also adopted the identity of Dodi's father Mohamed al-Fayed - may be responsible for some of the unpaid bills that have led to more than 20 claims being lodged against him in Californian Courts.

Sead has boasted that he had sex with several film stars and could have any woman he wanted. He told Layla Jazrawy, one of the women he was trying to seduce: "You're no Princess Diana. How could you not want me? You don't know what you're missing".

Fayed, 42, said in an affidavit to the Canadian court: "By impersonating me, Sead has caused immeasurable damage to my good name, my reputation, my family and Harrods as well as causing potential commercial damage to my business interests.


Fayed added: "I met Jodie Foster at a social function and she was amused to recount that she had been approached through her agent by a man purporting to be me, offereing her a part in a movie which I was supposedly producing. I assured Jodie that I had never made such an approach. ...

"Some people believed that I was supporting charity events, particularly as Sead's photograph had been superimposed

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Phantom Fayed charmed stars and left trail of debt

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over mine in some newspaper clippings I had seen.

"He impersonated me to the extent that I received calls from my aunt in Egypt and my step-mother in England, who had heard through influential circles in Canada that I had been active in Toronto attending social functions and pledging money to charities. Although my family donates considerable sums to charity, I have never been involved in charity events in Toronto, nor do I mix in Egyptian circles there."


Clarion notes

The above text represents extracts from the Sunday Times article and was transcribed by Clarion from a physical copy of the newspaper. The ellipsis "..." indicates where text has been omitted.