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Sunday, November 05, 2017 

Saudi Arabia makes arrests in corruption purge

What makes this case interesting is that prince al-Walid bin Talal, the same one who blamed Americans and Israel for 9-11, is among the several now in custody, which includes at least a few more princes:
Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, the billionaire with significant stakes in Citigroup Inc and Twitter Inc, was arrested by Saudi Arabian authorities as part of an anti-corruption purge in the kingdom. Alwaleed was picked up from his desert camp, the official said. Authorities didn’t disclose the allegations that prompted the arrests.

Ranked the world’s 50th richest person with a net worth of about $19 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Alwaleed is the founder of Kingdom Holding Co, a Riyadh-based investment company that has holdings in real estate, hotels and stocks such as Apple Inc around the world.
Unless he's repentent for his insult to democracies years before, I can't feel sorry he's in tangled in red tape now. The Washington Examiner has more:
Saudi Arabia's heir to the throne is overseeing an unprecedented wave of arrests of dozens of the country's most powerful princes, military officers, influential businessmen and government ministers — some of them potential rivals or critics of the crown prince, whose purported anti-corruption sweep sent shockwaves across the kingdom Sunday as he further consolidated power.

Among those taken into custody overnight Saturday were billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, one of the world's richest men with extensive holdings in Western companies, as well as two of the late King Abdullah's sons.

[...] The Saudi government says the arrests are part of a wider effort to increase transparency, accountability and good governance — key reforms needed to attract greater international investments and appease a Saudi public that has for decades complained of rampant government corruption and misuse of public funds by top officials. Volatility from surprise moves reshaping the kingdom, however, are likely to worry investors.

Among those reportedly taken into custody were two sons of the late King Abdullah: Prince Miteb bin Abdullah, who Saturday evening was ousted from his post as head of the prestigious National Guard tasked with protecting the Al Saud family, and Prince Turki bin Abdullah, who was once governor of Riyadh.
Nobody smart should invest in Saudi Arabia so long as they're an oppressive regime. At the same time, let's not assume this is a real battle against corruption they're running. For all we know, it could be a rather predictable sham, and a cover for a coup attempt.

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