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Al-Thani denied right to appeal and is now out of the frame at Marbella's La Bajadilla marina

The Supreme Court has refused permission to appeal.
The Supreme Court has refused permission to appeal. / SUR
  • The Supreme Court supported the TSJA decision to annul the proceedings under which the sheikh's company bid for, and was granted, the concession to manage and expand the port

Sheikh Al-Thani is no longer involved in La Bajadilla marina. The Supreme Court has decided not to admit the proceedings filed by Nas Marbella, the joint company headed by Al-Thani, against the refusal by the Andalusian High Court of Justice (TSJA) to allow an appeal against the decision to annul the concession for the management and extension to the port, which was approved in 2011.

The Supreme Court had declared the appeal inadmissible in a sentence dictated in Madrid last September, which this newspaper has now seen. This was the last possibility for Al-Thani to continue legal action and remain linked in some way to La Bajadilla port, because this decision by the Supreme Court means that the High Court sentence is final.

On 28 September last year the Andalusian court decided that Al-Thani did not fulfill the necessary technical and financial solvency requirements and therefore the temporary joint company of which he is the head should not have been permitted to bid for the contract for the expansion of the port.

The court decided that at the time of presenting the bid, the company failed to meet the requirements because it could not show a minimum threshold of turnover during the three previous years as it was a newly formed company, and it had no experience in managing marinas.

For that reason it annulled the decision adopted in 2011 by the Andalusian Public Ports Agency (APPA), which is part of the regional government, when it accepted a bid from Nas Marbella, the joint company formed by a company belonging to Sheikh Al-Thani (Nasir Bin Abdullah & Sons SL), the Marbella Leisure Port and the town council.

The sentence, which is now definitive, annuls the original decision by the contracting committee more than six years previously and all later ones, including granting the concession to the company headed by the sheikh for the expansion and management of the port.

Although the APPA, which a year earlier had already cancelled the adjudication and recovered the concession due to continual breaches by Al-Thani, decided not to appeal, the sheikh did so without the backing of his partners, Marbella council and its municipal company Puerto Deportivo de Marbella. He appealed first to the TSJA and then, when that was unsuccessful, tried the Supreme Court, which also rejected the case.

Another temporary joint company, formed by local businessmen who wanted to manage the port but whose application was turned down in favour of the sheikh, also took action against the APPA over its decision to allow Marbella council to be a partner in the joint company with Al-Thani and Marbella Leisure Port, claiming that the sheikh could turn to the town hall for financing in order to make the company look solvent.