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Cairo: The Saudi Ministry of Commerce has named and shamed a Saudi citizen after he was handed a court ruling convicting him of committing a commercial cover-up for his foreign brother-in-law in violation of the country’s law, Saudi media reported.

Investigations showed that the Saudi man had allowed his brother-in-law, who is a Syrian national, of illegally running a private business with-out a licence at a workshop for ornaments near the capital Riyadh, using his trade register.

On searching the workshop, evidence emerged that both men were involved in the crime of cover-up as the expatriate had ATM cards issued for the establishment allowing him to withdraw money generated by the illegal business, concluding contracts with customers and employing illegal labour with the aim of avoiding commitments related to wage protection and social insurance, the Saudi news agency SPA said.

The Ministry of Commerce has published a verdict in the case issued by a court in Riyadh including imposing fines on both offenders, naming to shame them at their expense.

Other penalties include the shutdown of the workshop, liquidating the business in question, as well as banning the Saudi from doing business and obligating him to pay overdue taxes. revoking his trade register and permanently deporting the convicted expatriate.

Saudi Arabia has launched the National Programme for Combat of Commercial Cover-ups, an affiliate of the Ministry of Commerce, with support from several state institutions in the kingdom including the Ministry of Labour and Social Development, the Ministry of Municipal and Village Affairs, the General Investment Authority, the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority and the Small and Medium Enterprises General Authority.

In undertaking the mission of exposing commercial covers-up, the pro-gramme promotes opening bank accounts for businesses, automating services and boosting commercial transparency.