Shoura wants expat prisoners extradited

Move would save Saudi government over $267 million
Shoura wants expat prisoners extradited
(Image for illustrative purpose only - Getty Images)
By Staff writer
Thu 11 Feb 2016 09:27 AM

The Shoura Council has requested that expatriate prisoners be sent to their respective countries and said it would save the government over $267 million (SR1 billion) annually, reported the Saudi Gazette.

The call was made on Monday while The Council discussed the 2014-15 report of the Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution (BIP).

It asked the bureau to start prisoners exchange agreements with several countries to reduce the financial burden on the Directorate General of Prisons.

A member of the Directorate, Prince Khaled Al-Saud, told the newspaper that upholding a prisoner costs around SR4,000 every month.

“As there are about 31,000 expatriate prisoners, the government is spending more than SR1 billion on them. This amount could be saved if these prisoners were repatriated,” he said.

On the other hand, a female member of the same association, Amal Al-Shaman, criticised the bureau for its lack of female investigators dedicated to women's cases.

“There are more than 433 cases of physical attacks against women, more than 399 cases of ethical abuse and more than 2,300 issues of aggression against children yet the bureau does not have female investigators to question the women involved in these cases,” she explained.

Shaman noted that because women are usually questioned in the presence of a female prison guard, a member of the Commission of the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice (Haia) and a male investigator from the bureau, they're often fearful and uncertain.

“Under this scenario, the women under investigations will be in a miserable condition of fear and uncertainty,” she said.

She pointed out that the bureau does not employ graduates of law colleges as female investigators despite there being over 2,000 vacancies for the positions.

She said, "There are only 26 women employed at the BIP as administrators."

She also discussed the bureau's supervision of female prisons and social protection homes without women inspectors.

Other issues discussed in the meeting were the Interior Ministry's annual report, which hadn't been discussed since the Ministry's inception 23 years ago.

The council stated that the ministry should place more efforts on establishing an integrated traffic system in the Kingdom. However, it praised its efforts of battling terrorism and becoming an e-government.

In addition, it requested that the ministry adopt a technological project to allow citisens to film car accidents to help reduce the number of traffic victims.

Furthermore, it asked the ministry to quicken the implementation of the National Strategic Plan for Traffic Safety, which was adopted by the Council of Ministers almost two years ago.

The council will be holding six similar sessions a month.

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