Saudi Arabia arrests defense official on bribery charges

Market trading boards are seen at the Australian Securities Exchange in Sydney, Friday, February 9, 2018. ( AAP Image/Ben Rushton) NO ARCHIVING

Authorities in Saudi Arabia say a Defense Ministry official has been arrested on suspicion of accepting over $260,000 in a bribe.

A report Tuesday night by the state-run Saudi Press Agency says the official and two others have been arrested over the bribe, which was worth 1 million Saudi riyals.

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The report did not name those involved, though the statement from prosecutors described the bribery as being over a contract between the Defense Ministry and a commercial company.

The report quoted Attorney General Sheikh Saud bin Abdullah al-Muajab calling the bribery plot a "betrayal of trust."

Saudi Arabia under its assertive Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been pursuing corruption cases. However, a prominent monthslong corruption sweep late last year also saw the 32-year-old monarch further consolidate his power.

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