OPN_190412- Riyadh at night gener Saudi Arabi
Riyadh. Image Credit: Agency

Abu Dhabi: Saudi Arabia’s anti-graft authority (Nazaha) has arrested a number of senior Saudis and expats officials, as the agency continues its crackdown against fraud, bribery and other crimes, a senior official said.

Among those incarcerated were three Royal Guard officers, retired major general, colonel, and lieutenant colonel, working in contract and procurement management, and 21 businessmen for awarding tenders to companies belonging to them and their acquaintances, and violating the government procurement system.

The officials were also charged with manipulating the quantities and unlawfully disbursing sums of money to these companies, and using their relatives to illegally obtain the money and purchase real estate inside and outside the Kingdom, in order not to reveal the sources of these funds.

The official said the sums obtained from these crimes has so far reached SR400 million, and investigations were still ongoing.

The watchdog also suspended an employee at the Royal Court, who previously worked in the Lands and Grants Department, and two Saudi men for brokering 79 royal grants for citizens in exchange for bribes amounting to SR2.2 million.

Nazaha continues to ask citizens to protect public funds, by reporting suspicious financial or administrative activities.

The commission has recently investigated tens of suspected corruption cases and illegal transactions in different fields.

In recent years, Saudi Arabia has stepped up a clampdown on white-collar corruption, nabbing dozens of state employees and entrepreneurs.