Saudi authorities questioned 208 in anti-corruption investigation

Saudi Arabia's King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud walks with his son and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, before King Salman leaves for Medina, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, November 8, 2017. Picture taken November 8, 2017. Saudi Press Agency/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE.
Vastavam web: Saudi authorities have questioned 208 people in an anti-corruption investigation and estimate at least $100 billion has been stolen through graft, a top official said on Thursday as the inquiry expanded beyond the kingdom’s borders.“Based on our investigations over the past three years, we estimate that at least $100 billion has been misused through systematic corruption and embezzlement over several decades,” Attorney-General Sheikh Saud al-Mojeb said in a statement.
Dozens of princes, senior officials and prominent businessmen, including cabinet ministers and billionaires, have been detained in the inquiry, which was announced last weekend and appears at least partly aimed at strengthening the power of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.Almost all of the 19, including billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal and former National Guard chief Prince Miteb bin Abdullah, are known to be have been detained.The commercial bankers said UAE authorities had not explained why they wanted the information, but the bankers believe the authorities were acting at the behest of the Saudi government, which has said it aims to recover illicit funds.The UAE, particularly Dubai, is one of the main places where wealthy Saudis park their money abroad. In addition to bank accounts, they buy luxury apartments and villas in Dubai and invest in the emirate’s volatile stock market.