Qatar princess Kasia al-Thani has been found dead in her home in Spain from a suspected drug overdose. Her body was discovered by the Spanish police officials in her apartment in Marbella on Sunday, when one of her children alerted the police that Kasia was not answering their calls for several days.
A post-mortem was conducted on Tuesday, the authorities revealed. Initial indications suggests that she died of a drug overdose but the report has not been made public yet.
Who is Kasia Gallanio?
The princess, whose maiden name is Kasia Gallanio, had married Abdelaziz bin Khalifa al-Thani, the uncle of the Emir of Qatar, in 2004. She divorced the prince, who is now 73, in 2007.
Kasia was born in Poland and is of Polish ethnicity. She grew up in Los Angeles. The 45-year-old, who ahs been living in Spain after separation from the Qatari royal, had been battling depression and alcoholism according to French media reports. She had been denied the custody of her three daughters, Euronews reported.
How Did Kasia Meet Qatari Royal?
Kasia met Al-Thani when she was a 19-year-old student visiting the French capital with her friends. Al-Thani had been exiled to Paris after his half-brother Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani staged a coup against him in 1995. Even with a 28-year-old age gap, the couple got married and had three children, all girls.
As their relationship turned sour, the pair separated in 2007 and what followed was a long toxic custody battle.
Separation and Custody Battle
The fight for the custody of their children went on for nearly a decade as Al-Thani was being accused of sexually assaulting his eldest daughter by Kasia who described the incident as "every mother's nightmare". As per French media reports, he also made his daughters sleep in the servants quarters of his Paris home after they visited their mother until they apologized.
Weeks before her death, Kasia had revealed in an interview on April 17 the details of her divorce and relationship with the former oil and finance minister. She had been living in one of the couple's homes in the Spanish resort city. The other children stayed with their father in the luxurious Avenue Montaigne in Paris.
"Because there's such an age difference between us and some family members came in between, we just grew apart," she said.
According to the Daily Mail, describing her life as a 'golden cage,' the former princess, who was of Polish origin, claimed her ex-husband had refused to pay for child support and as a result of their 'long and bitter' divorce, she was left no choice but to sell her own jewelry.
French media reports further mentioned that on May 19, a Paris court rejected Kasia's custody demands. Soon after this she suffered from nervous breakdowns and was hospitalized. The case was then postponed until a psychological evaluation occurred.
Friends of Kasia were saddened over the death of their friend and several of them took to social media to express their condolences. One of her friends, Louis Spagnuolo, told the Spanish newspaper Olive Press that he was devastated by the news. He also said that contrary to some reports, Kasia was "against drugs" and not an alcoholic.
"She loved her daughters beyond belief and would never leave them. She was dead against drugs and was never an alcoholic," he said.