Sitting minister arrested for corruption

19 Mar, '10

Woke up this morning to this:

للمرة الأولى في البحرين
القبض على وزير بتهمة غسيل الأموال

علمت «الوقت» من مصادر خاصة أن جهاز الأمن الوطني قد أقدم يوم أمس الخميس ألقى القبض على احد الوزراء والتحقيق معه بتهمة غسيل الأموال.

وقالت المصادر إن الوزير قد تم استدعاؤه عصر أمس من قبل جهاز الأمن الوطني، حيث رافقته عناصر الجهاز من بيته إلى مكتبه الذي تم إخضاعه للتفتيش»، مشيرة إلى انه «تم الطلب منه استدعاء موظفيه الذين حضروا إلى مكتبه وتم التحفظ على أجهزة الهواتف النقالة الخاصة بهم».
وأوضحت المصادر أن «التحقيق مع الوزير تم أولا في مقر جهاز الأمن الوطني ثم تمت إحالته إلى قسم مكافحة الجرائم الاقتصادية التابعة للتحقيقات الجنائية بالعدلية، وباشرت عناصره التحقيق مع الوزير»، إلا أن المصادر لم تكشف عن تفاصيل أخرى تتعلق بحجم الأموال التي تم غسلها ومصادرها، كما لم تكشف عن عدد الذين تم التحفظ عليهم.

يشار إلى أنها المرة الأولى في البحرين التي تقوم فيها أجهزة الأمن والتحقيقات الجنائية بالتحقيق مع وزير لايزال على رأس عمله.
http://alwaqt.com/art.php?aid=202904

and from the GDN’s front page:
Official held for fraud

An official accused of running money laundering operations in Bahrain and abroad was arrested yesterday following investigations by the Economic Crimes Directorate. Interior Ministry assistant under-secretary for legal affairs Brigadier Rashid Bu Humood said the ministry discovered the fact early last year and closely monitored in secret the official’s activities in Bahrain and abroad. His contacts and meetings with his aides and parties he was dealing with abroad were subjected to strict control after taking all required legal measures. He has been referred to Public Prosecution.

Wanna guess who this minister is?

They don’t mention him in the pieces above of course, but according to various online forums it appears to be my friend Mansour bin Rajab!

Well this is a turn of events isn’t it? If it is indeed the Right Honourable Minister of course.

Messages?

Don’t know, but maybe it’s a combination of factors:

    1. the government is signaling that they’re serious (again) about combating corruption
    2. they want an improvement in their CPI
    3. the cookie jar is being depleted too fast
    4. same with the goat bank (Islamically correct form of a piggy bank)
    5. discovered this expeditious method of reducing staffing levels
    6. enacting the corruption article of the Labour Law saves termination fees

or any other number of factors.

Whatever it is, like the rest of Bahrain I’ll wait for clarifications and an outcome of this case, if any.

One thing I will guarantee you though: watch this situation being played with sectarian notes.

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Comments (23)

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  1. Abdulla81 says:

    Mahmood, the thing I don’t get here is where is the praise on the people/authorities that captured this guy? Where is the mentioning and the full respect of the rule of Law? Regardless of the crime committed, humans are humans, we make mistakes (messed up ones i guess when you are a Minister), the main point here is a bad thing got uncovered (nothing embarrassing about that) and swift transparent action will be delivered. Seriously hope the government doesn’t lose the ball on this.

  2. Eyad says:

    which ever minister it is this is a good thing for Bahrain by ll measures, and will be highly braised by all. its a big step forward and hopefully a start in the right direction.

    as you said I hope this doesn’t turn into a sectarian goga and people should see it is it is.

  3. mahmood says:

    Update: Looks like he’s been released in good health and has announced that he will be receiving visitors in his majlis as usual… according to Al-Wasat

  4. Anon says:

    I don’t think any of this is the result of any of those factors you mentioned.

    I suspect the intl agencies that were following this individual’s dirty work abroad had no choice but to approach the bahraini authorities having identified the individual involved as a senior member of the bahraini govt!

    The Bahraini authorities obviously couldnt sit back and do nothing. They’ve had to put on a good show to appease their european buddies as having ‘taken action’

  5. The Cynic says:

    Money Laundry is being monitored by the United States, while National Corruption is being monitored by the Government. Is that why when thousands of whales are stealing public’s money, nobody get questioned, but when only one treads over to US’s boundaries, he gets Incarcerated in a blink of an eye 😀

  6. D says:

    Bin Rajab is an Iranian spy.

    • mahmood says:

      And I suppose you have proof of this? If you do, you’d better run to the public prosecutor as they’re desperate to hear from your sources!

      Until then, I suggest you keep your rumours to yourself.

      • Reem says:

        Well, Its in the GDN today.

        • mahmood says:

          The GDN has an agenda!

          Look, it’s no secret that I don’t like the guy, but regardless, I think the accused has to have his day in court before everybody heaps on the accusations especially if those are racial or sectarian in motivation and propagation.

          In the end, truth will out.

      • D says:

        I have no proof but the Iranian element to this story was picked up by Al Bilad & GulfNews.

        http://bit.ly/BahSpy

        It’s hard not to point the finger of blame when the King has already fired the person in question by royal decree!

        • mahmood says:

          Even with the King relieving bin Rajab of his duties, does not necessarily mean that he’s guilty.

          The King is not a judge! That he leaves to the Judicial system to determine.

  7. heraish says:

    Who is the judge that will be judging in his case?

  8. Reem says:

    He was probably followed for months and no one would drop an accusation as strong as that if it was not justified.
    People who have such roles should not compromise their position in any case.
    On the day of judgement he will not be asked how much money he made but if he compromised his responsibilities to obtain it.
    In this case I dont believe it’s a hidden agenda it’s fact!
    Sorry I never liked the guy, wondered why he was there in the first place.

  9. ajax says:

    the guy doesn’t have that power to begin with.

    his position is made up to appease him or something after reliving him from Ministry of Municipalities and Agriculture Affairs.

    oh well , he got it coming for being fifth column

  10. ajax says:

    hopefully

    he get executed for his treason

    • mahmood says:

      oh boy…

      apart from believing in the death penalty and becoming not only his judge, but also executioner when the law hasn’t even started to look into his case, do you enjoy being sectarian in your outlook?

      • The Cynic says:

        Take a look at his recent pictures in the news. Does his face look like the face of a man worrying about doing time or even chraged with anything?

        I say he gets a simple slap on his hand. (maximum punishment!)

        “Bad lil baby, don’t ever do that again, okay? or else next time i’ll have to… Awwwww.. will you look at that cuuuuuuute face. come here baby, give daddy a big hug… etc.” (-_-;)

  11. ali says:

    It looks that Sh.Khalid is an Iranian spy too?! He too is accused in this laundering affairs.

    I’m sorry to say that we (Bahrainis) cannot judge anything without our racial and sectarian motivations. It is a fact, stupid people deserve stupid government.

    enjoy

  12. Anonny says:

    Since when did money laundering become treason?

    Some people’s brainless extremism makes them blind to reality.

    If we’re going to execute people for stealing money, then where the hell are we going to put all the corpses?

    Thanks for playing, Ajax.

  13. heraish says:

    Who was the judge that handled your case with Ibn Rajab?

  14. May says:

    I LOVE how everybody is an expert on this.. we are full of conspiracy theories aren’t we…

    everybody all of a sudden “knew all along” that this guy did this and that.. No one dared say anything before.. I LOVE how biased people are.. what will all these ‘experts’ in the doings of mansour say if he is found not guilty… and thats IF the case goes to court.. AND THATS A BIG IF… of course, everyone will say ‘it was a slap on the hand’ or ‘he was let go because of this or that’, no one will ever say he was really innocent….

    i LOVE how everybody is disregarding the fact that MURDERERS are let go in this country … murderers.. because certain people insist upon it in a violent manner.. i LOVE how Bahrain has become ridiculous. you are all ridiculous..

    be quiet.. really.. its better than you all sounding like complete fools… instead of running your mouths about bullshit you’ve heard or read in the oh-so-dependable newspapers.. why don’t you just keep your mouths shut and see how it plays out.. otherwise… u will DEFINITELY be and sound like an idiot…

  15. heraish says:

    A better approach is to focus on the process and the see how he system deals with the issue. The qualification and experience of the judge etc. There should be consistency.

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