Qatari sheikh flees United States after racing his $1.4million Ferrari through Beverly Hills


Qatari sheikh flees United States after racing his $1.4million Ferrari through Beverly Hills

A Qatari playboy has fled the United States after police investigated a race through Beverly Hills involving his $1.4 million Ferrari.
by Hannah Parry



The Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani


A Qatari playboy has fled the United States after police investigated a race through Beverly Hills involving his $1.4 million Ferrari.

The original incident, which was caught on video, was spread across the internet.

Beverly Hills Police said the man who initially claimed diplomatic immunity has now left the country.



The two luxury supercars were filmed speeding up and down the residential streets on Saturday evening




Police have said the cars in the video appeared to have been driven recklessly but that officers who arrived to find the Ferrari in the driveway could not make an arrest or issue a citation because they did not witness the incident.

Beverly Hills police spokesman Lieutenant Lincoln Hoshino said that while investigators had connected Sheikh Khalid Hamad Al-Thani to the Ferrari, it was unknown if he was the person who claimed diplomatic immunity or if he owned the luxury car.

Hoshino said police had not yet identified the drivers.

The drivers were unlikely to have had diplomatic immunity, police added.

A spokesman said: ‘It’s against a federal law for someone to claim diplomatic immunity when they don’t have it, so we’re looking at that and then we’re also looking at the reckless driving.’

Hoshino said it appeared the Ferrari was not registered with the State Department to be brought into the country.

Beverly Hills police said they may seek to prosecute those involved in the street race through the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

A spokesman for the Consulate of Qatar in Los Angeles did not return a call.

Others claimed the white Porsche 911 GT3, estimated to be worth $130,400, and bright yellow Ferrari LaFerrari, a hybrid supercar with 950 horsepower, were speeding at more than 100mph and said one of the cars even sideswiped the other.

The race only appeared to end when the engine of the Ferrari, which had a Qatar license plate, began smoking and pulled into the drive of the luxury $10 million, five-bedroom rented home.

A new LaFerrari is worth an estimated $1.4 million but California-based vehicle valuation firm Kelly Blue Brook told NBC4 it could fetch up to $5 million.

Police officers arrived shortly after to investigate reports of racing but were told by the driver that he had diplomatic immunity.

While he agreed he owned the supercars, he denied speeding, running stop signs and driving recklessly.

‘The car was still smoking when the cops came,’ neighbor Roya Levian told KTLA.

‘The kids were terrified and the neighbors were out and this woman was screaming ’cause her husband almost got run over.’

Her 10-year-old son Ashton, who was playing down the street and when the cars raced by him, said he was ‘scared to go home’ in case he was hit by the vehicles.

Several local residents also complained that the sports car driver had often used their streets as a racetrack – leaving them fearing for their safety.

Neighbors said the drivers were from Qatar and since they moved into area a few months ago, they had seen several sports cars on their driveways.

The people currently living at the 8,895 sqft home in Beverly Hills, which rents for $45,000 a month, where the cars pulled up on Saturday, declined to speak to reporters yesterday.

Video journalist Jacob Rogers said that a man – thought to be the driver – confronted him when he captured the incident on video.

‘He told me verbatim, ‘I could have you killed and get away with it,’ Rogers said.

‘I told him, ‘the press is allowed to be here on the sidewalk on a public street.’ He said, ‘F*** America’ and threw a cigarette at me.’

Footage of the race, which began on North Walden Drive, has now been viewed hundreds of thousands of times on You Tube.

The Beverly Hills Police Department said that the United States State Department is involved now in the investigation into his alleged diplomatic status and the legality of the vehicles driven on the road.

The department told they were looking into the ‘unsafe and reckless driving of high performance exotic vehicles’ but said that as officers did not observe the violations personally, they could not make a citation or arrest at the time.

Lieutenant Lincoln Hoshino, Executive Officer, said: ‘As officers were conducting their investigation, they were approached by an individual who indicated that the vehicles belonged to him and denied driving at a high rate of speed, running stop signs or driving recklessly. That individual claimed to have diplomatic immunity.

‘The BHPD has zero tolerance for this type of driving which recklessly endangers the public at large.’



Both cars then pulled onto the drive of a home on the 700 block of North Walden Drive on Saturday evening




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