Saudi Anti-Corruption Campaign: Government Set to Get Back 'Stolen' Money

© REUTERS / Bandar Algaloud/Courtesy of Saudi Royal CourtSaudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman sits during an allegiance pledging ceremony in Mecca, Saudi Arabia June 21, 2017
Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman sits during an allegiance pledging ceremony in Mecca, Saudi Arabia June 21, 2017 - Sputnik International
After dozens were arrested over corruption allegations in Saudi Arabia on Sunday, authorities are now expected to decide on measures against those arrested and on the fate of their frozen assets. If corruption allegations are confirmed, those measures will be decided by the Saudi prosecutor general.

"If it is established that land or property was stolen from the government they will be returned under public ownership. Possession rights in each case have to be proved by documents," Muhammed Shams, an economic consultant and former adviser to the Saudi industrial minister, told Sputnik Arabic.

Shams underscored that each defendant has the right to be assisted by an attorney and can also use all legal opportunities to defend themselves.

"Those arrests were not accidental. They had been prepared by an investigation. King Salman just made it clear," he said.

Over 40 members of the Royal family, including billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, ministers, military officials and businessmen, were arrested in Saudi Arabia on Sunday by decree of the kingdom’s newly-established anti-corruption committee headed by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

READ MORE: Saudi Anti-Graft Campaign a Cover For Political Power Games — Politician

Shams said that the anti-corruption investigation in Saudi Arabia was launched a month ago. Numerous suspects had been questioned until the first facts of corruption, bribery and money laundering were established.

"Crown Prince Prince Mohammed bin Salman has repeatedly mentioned the investigation in media and vowed to wipe out corruption at all levels, despite the social status and background of those involved," Shams added.

On Wednesday, Reuters reported citing sources familiar with the situation that Saudi Arabian authorities have made additional arrests as part of the anti-corruption campaign. Some suspects were detained while others are being telephoned by investigators about their finances.

Banking sources also said that the number of domestic bank accounts frozen as a result of the crackdown has already reached over 1,700.

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