Mystery buyer of famed da Vinci is Saudi prince: Report

The buyer who paid a record $450 million for Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece "Salvator Mundi" has been revealed as a Saudi prince with ties to the regime, according to The New York Times. According to documents reviewed by the Times, Prince Bader bin Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Farhan al-Saud is the buyer. 

The 500-year-old "Salvator Mundi," or "Savior of the World," sold last month for $450 million, which includes buyer's fees, after a 19-minute bidding war on the auction block at Christie's. The painting to have held the record for the most paid ever at auction was $179.4 million for Picasso's "Women of Algiers (Version O)" in May 2015, according to the Associated Press.

According to the Times, Prince Bader is a friend of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who led the anit-corruption purge  that led to the arrest of princes, senior military officers, businessmen and top officials, including a well-known royal billionaire with extensive holdings in Western companies.

A spokesman for Christie's declined to comment on the sale and Prince Bader did not return the Times' requests for comment. Earlier Wednesday, the newly-opened Louve in Abu Dhabi tweeted the painting was coming to the museum.