Saudi billionaire to keep control of broadcaster MBC

Saudi Arabia’s Waleed Al-Ibrahim will keep management control of regional television broadcaster MBC after his release from detention in the country’s “corruption probe”, a senior MBC executive told Reuters today.

The executive, speaking on condition of anonymity under briefing rules, said Ibrahim’s 40 per cent stake in MBC would not change and that he was found innocent of any wrongdoing in the probe.

Ibrahim, who at the weekend was released along with at least half a dozen other prominent Saudi businessmen detained in the probe, reiterated his allegiance to Saudi Arabia and the ruling family, the executive told Reuters.

Dozens of people were detained in the crackdown which has consolidated Prince Mohammed Bin Salman’s power while alarming much of the traditional business establishment. Billionaire Prince Al-Waleed Bin Talal, Saudi Arabia’s best-known international investor, was amongst those detained, however he was freed on Saturday.

The allegations against the men include money laundering, bribery, extortion and taking advantage of public office for personal gain, a Saudi official told Reuters.

A royal decree said the crackdown was launched in response to “exploitation by some of the weak souls who have put their own interests above the public interest, in order to, illicitly accrue money”.

Read: Saudi Arabia sentences human rights activists to prison

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