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Dubai: Two men and a woman have been each sentenced to five years in jail following deportation for attempting to smuggle 1.3 million riyals outside Saudi Arabia, local media reported.

The Public Prosecution revealed that its Economic Crimes Prosecution unit had earlier charged the three convits of forming a gang for nefarious purposes following investigations. It then referred them to the competent court on charges of money laundering. The court issued its ruling after it was found that the two men and the woman, all of African nationality, tried to smuggle 1.3 million riyals abroad by hiding the amount in secret stashes inside the woman’s bag.

The woman was arrested while trying to leave King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah and the cash money was seized. The investigations revealed that the seized amounts resulted from financial crimes and violations of several regulations

The convicts will be deported from Saudi Arabia after serving their sentences.

The Public Prosecution submitted an objection note to appeal the verdict, in which it demanded a stiffer penalty against the convicts.

The Public Prosecution urged travelers to be careful and not to allow others to exploit them and to ask them to transfer any amounts or financial values without a legal justification.

The prosecution is continuing to protect the Saudi economy and its domestic product, warning that it will submit every person who tries to harm the financial security or the national economy to the competent court.