$400mn seized in anti-corruption probe

Employees of 10 ministries among 298 arrested for corruption

Anti-graft authorities in Saudi Arabia have seized sums amounting to SR400mn in one of its criminal investigations; according to an official source at the Kingdom’s Oversight and Anti-Corruption Authority (Nazaha).

The source also said the authority has initiated a number of criminal cases recently; and legal procedures against the accused are underway.

In of the cases, a retired major general, colonel, and lieutenant colonel, who also work in the contracts and procurement department; arrested recently along with 21 businessmen and an expatriate of Arab nationality, according to the source.

The officers were arrested for awarding tenders to companies belonging to them; and their acquaintances in violation of the government procurement and tender rules. They also manipulated quantities and illegally disbursed sums of money to their companies; using their relatives to obtain money and purchase real estate inside and outside the Kingdom with the aim of not disclosing the sources of those sums.

The confiscated sums from these crimes have so far reached SR400mn, while investigations are still ongoing with the parties involved.

The source cited the second case in which an employee at the Royal Court who previously worked in the Lands and Grants Department. Besides, arresting two citizens as the first finalized the procedures of 79 royal grants for citizens in return for receiving cash from them through intermediaries. The total amount he received reached up to SR2.85mn.

The authority also said it would continue to pursue anyone; who exploits the public office to achieve personal gain or harm the public interest in any way possible. And that it will apply what the law rules against the violators with zero tolerance.​