SAUDI ARABIA

SR198 million seized in anti-corruption probe

April 18, 2021

Saudi Gazette report

RIYADH — An official source in the Oversight and Anti-Corruption Authority (Nazaha) stated that the Authority has initiated a number of criminal cases lately, and legal procedures against the accused are under way.

Most prominent of which are as follow:

The first case: In cooperation with the Ministry of National Guard, a retired Major General and two retired employees in the 15th rank and with positions of power in the ministry were arrested for obtaining cash from local and foreign contracting companies with the ministry.

The first received an amount of twenty million five hundred thousand riyals (SR20,500,000), of which an amount of one million five hundred thousand riyals (SR1,500,000) was from an Austrian company in exchange for recommending it to those in positions of power.

A part of the amount was received in cash and the remainder was through the purchase of real estate under his name as well as transferring part of it to businessmen for investment to return them later.

The second person received an amount of thirty million one hundred and fifty three thousand riyals (SR30,153,000) in cash installments, and the third received an amount of one hundred and forty seven million and four hundred thousand riyals (SR147,400,000), part of which was received in cash and the remainder through the purchase of real estate under his name.

The aforementioned obtained a total amount of one hundred ninety eight million and fifty three thousand riyals (SR198,053,000) in exchange for facilitating the procedures of awarding and disbursement to these companies.

The second case: This case saw the arrest of the Director General of Projects at the "previously" Ministry of Higher Education and 5 businessmen. The first established companies with the latter and obtain through these companies projects at exaggerated prices in the ministry, obliging other contracting companies to deal with his own companies and receive sums of money for that.

The third case: The case is in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, an employee of the ministry was arrested for spending seven hundred thirty three thousand riyals (SR733,000) in an irregular manner from the account of one of the Kingdom's embassies.

The fourth case: The case is in cooperation with the Ministry of Media, an employee of the ministry was arrested for issuing (328) media licenses and stealing an amount of approximately seven hundred thousand riyals (SR700,000), through repeatedly using the same payment number, which represents the licenses issuing fees.

The fifth case: Two employees at the Ministry of Finance branch in one of the regions and two citizens (real estate owner, agent) were arrested, as the employees obtained an amount of one hundred twenty-six thousand riyals (SR126,000) out of a total amount of eight million and seventy six thousand riyals (SR8,076,000) that was agreed upon in exchange for facilitating the payment of financial compensations.

The sixth case: The arrest of 3 employees in the Education Department in one of the regions (director general of operation and maintenance, director of financial and administrative affairs, and building supervisor) for obtaining an amount of six hundred and twenty-four thousand riyals (SR624,000) in cash installments from a businessman who is "arrested" in exchange for the facilitation of obtaining 7 projects with a total amount of three million two hundred twenty thousand three hundred and fifty riyals (SR3,220,350).

The seventh case: In cooperation with the Ministry of Justice, a notary in one of the regions was arrested for issuing a lost deed to one of his relatives in an irregular manner.

The eighth case: In cooperation with the Ministry of Interior, an officer with the rank of captain working in the General Directorate of Narcotics Control Branch in one of the regions was arrested for obtaining an amount of thirty five thousand riyals (SR35,000) from an Arab expatriate in exchange for not pursuing a case related to the expatriate's brother.

The ninth case: the arrest of an employee of the Saudi Electricity Company and a government employee (mediator) as the mediator received an amount of eighty five thousand riyals (SR85,000), in exchange for the introduction of electrical current by the company's employee to one of the violating buildings which has no deed.

The tenth case: The arrest of a bank employee in one of the regions for obtaining an amount of twenty one thousand riyals (SR21,000) from some of the bank clients in exchange for completing their financing procedures.

The eleventh case: The arrest of two employees working in a municipality for receiving an amount of twenty five thousand riyals (SR25,000) in exchange for overlooking the violation of removing a site that belongs to a company.

The Authority affirms on the continuation to pursue anyone who exploits the public office to achieve personal gain or harm the public interest in any way possible, and that the accountability extends far beyond the retirement of any individual, as the crimes of financial and administrative corruption have no statute of limitations, and that it will apply what the law rules against the violators with zero tolerance.


April 18, 2021
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