Daily Management Review

$1 Billion Is The Price For Freedom For Arrested Saudi Prince In Corruption Crackdown: Reports


$1 Billion Is The Price For Freedom For Arrested Saudi Prince In Corruption Crackdown: Reports
A deal that is believed to be equal to $1 billion was struck between Prince Miteb bin Abdulla and the Saudi authorities to secure the former’s release, according to media reports quoting an official engaged in the Saudi anti-graft campaign.
Prince Miteb bin Abdulla was one of the senior most Saudi royals who had been detained in the drive of the kingdom to reduce and eliminate corruption.
Prince Miteb was released Tuesday. Until as early as this month, he had headed the powerful National Guard in the kingdom. Sources also reportedly said that settlement deals have been finalized for at least three other suspects who are under detention. Prince Miteb, son of the late King Abdullah, was not reachable by the media for comments. 
Sources also told the media that at least five of the detained would be prosecuted by the public prosecutor while several other individuals have been decided to be released. Complete discretion about taking a suspect to court, or to accept or deny a settlement proposal as well as complete control over the investigations have been given to the prosecutor.
A number of members of the royal family as well as billionaires were targeted, detained and arrested in Saudi Arabia, such as Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, and the pace at which these settlements are occurring and the release of Prince Miteb are clear indications about the seriousness and the speed at which the Saudi administration intends to implement the corruption crackdown. Prince Miteb was arrested less than a month ago. The impact of the crackdown on power in the world’s biggest oil exporter is being assessed by analysts, bankers and diplomats across the world as the measures have shaken everyone up.
A portion of the money that the people arrested or detained had managed to gain illegally has been agreed to be returned back to the kingdom in lieu of their freedom, said Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman which is the most dominant leader and is also known as MBS. As much as $100 billion would be revered by the authorities in settlements.
News about settlements for freedom emerged last week itself in the local media.  Sources have said that transfer of money form personal accounts to government coffers have begun in some cases and in other cases, portions of assets of businessmen were transferred to the government under agreement with government officials. All these are being done to avoid trial by those who have been arrested.
“Most princes arrested will certainly try to buy their way out, and we will see more of them doing just that to avoid jail time," said Raihan Ismail, an associate lecturer at the Centre for Arab & Islamic Studies at the Australian National University in Canberra. “This process lacks accountability and integrity. I doubt that detailed charges will ever be released, especially if settlements are reached.”

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