The anti-corruption campaign started by King Salman was a great success for the Kingdom. This type of campaign was carried out for the first time in the history of Saudi Arabia. Many well-known celebrities were arrested in the cases of corruption and were shifted to Riyadh most luxurious hotel, Ritz Carlton.
Ritz-Carlton hotel in Riyadh has been made a prison and around 200 accused are imprisoned inside. The crown prince said just 1% of the accused were able to prove that they were not involved in any corruption activity, 4% refused to accept that they were corrupt and 95% of them are ready to settle.[irp]
Saudi authorities estimated that they can eventually recover about $100 billion from these corrupt people as a settlement. They said that they have been working on success agreements with suspects that are under arrest in Ritz Carlton.
The people of Saudi Arabia are waiting to know about the further investigation and their release. There were many questions raised about freeing them without trial. Everyone was questioning about the fate of the arrested people including a renowned commentator Turki Al-Hamad.
In answer to all the question raised by the public, Abdul Rahman Al-Lahem published in Okaz newspaper that it is indeed a good question and it is not possible to compare ordinary theft crime to a very complex financial corruption crime.
He further stated that it requires flexibility in the process to serve the public interest and the public treasury with hundreds of millions, which may have been drained off outside the Kingdom and it is very difficult to recover and we cannot even trace the money without the cooperation of the arrest personalities who have corrupted.
He added to his words, “The benefit of the public fund outweighs the interest of imprisoning a person. The community will get a little advantage from his imprisonment after a long trial that may not result in the conviction because such cases are complex in terms of evidence and proof.
This does not necessarily reduce the validity of the trial, but there is a similar road that may benefit the community and the state more than indictment and trial.” The Supreme Committee that was chaired by the Crown Prince to investigate corruption cases is excused from all related regulations and has a wide freedom of jurisdiction and decision making in the public interest.
It is a non-traditional committee investigating unconventional crimes by unusual means and mechanisms. It was also reported from the general prosecutor that from the 200 arrested people, 7 are cleared and left the hotel after completing their investigation and at least 4 more people are said to be innocent.
Reuters quoted the Saudi Official on Wednesday, saying that at least four other suspects have finalized settlement agreement and the public prosecutor has decided to release several personalities, and he has decided to put at least five people on trial without unveiling their identities.
Source: Al Arabiya