Loujain Al-Hathloul jailed for 68 months, with half sentence suspended

Loujain Al-Hathloul jailed for 68 months, with half sentence suspended
The Public Prosecution office. (SPA)
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Updated 29 December 2020

Loujain Al-Hathloul jailed for 68 months, with half sentence suspended

Loujain Al-Hathloul jailed for 68 months, with half sentence suspended
  • The court said that it suspended part of her sentence to pave the way for Al-Hathloul’s rehabilitation

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s Public Prosecutor and the attorney for Loujain Al-Hathloul, sentenced to 68 months in prison under counterterrorism laws, will both file an appeal against the verdict of the Specialized Criminal Court in Riyadh, sources told Arab News.

The Public Prosecutor is seeking a harsher sentence while her lawyer wants the conviction dropped after Al-Hathloul was found guilty of involvement in a number of criminal activities.

The court suspended two years and 10 months of her sentence of five years and eight months. The verdict was pronounced in an open session attended by Al-Hathloul, her family, her lawyer, members of the local press and the Saudi Human Rights Commission.

The court convicted Al-Hathloul of committing criminal acts under Article 43 of the Penal Law for Crimes of Terrorism and its Financing, such as incitement to change the Kingdom’s government system, seeking to carry out a foreign agenda from inside the Kingdom using the Internet with the aim of jeopardizing public order, and cooperating with individuals and entities that have committed terrorist criminal acts.

The judge said that the defendant had confessed to committing the crimes and her confessions were documented voluntarily without force or coercion, and that no proof was found that the confession was extracted under torture as she had claimed in previous hearings.

The court said that it suspended part of her sentence to pave the way for Al-Hathloul’s rehabilitation. The ruling highlighted that if she committed any crime within the next three years, the suspension would be canceled.

The court’s decision included the application of the accessory penalty stipulated in Article 53 of the Law for Crimes of Terrorism and its Financing. This means confiscating the electronic devices and media referred to in the seizure that the defendant used in committing her crimes.

Legal adviser Naif Al-Subaie said that the judgment issued against the defendant was a preliminary ruling and subject to appeal within 30 days from the date of the formal receipt of the verdict from the court, not from the date of the pronouncement of the judgment.

FASTFACT

The court convicted Al-Hathloul of committing criminal acts under Article 43 of the Penal Law for Crimes of Terrorism and its Financing.

Al-Subaie added that in the event of an appeal, the case would be transferred to the Court of Appeal, comprised of three judges who would look into the verdict against the defendant, the case file, the evidence presented by the Public Prosecutor, and the defendant’s confession before they rejected or supported the judgment.

He said that the defendant was also entitled to appeal to the Supreme Court.

Another legal adviser, Mohammed Al-Mahmoud, said that the verdict stipulated that Al-Hathloul would be imprisoned for 68 months from the date of her arrest in June 2018, and half the period (34 months) would be suspended.

Al-Mahmoud added that in the event that the judgment is appealed, there are these possibilities: The verdict issued by the court is supported, the sentence is increased — in this case, the defendant will be summoned to serve the remaining period, or the sentence is reduced — in this case, the defendant is entitled to compensation for the days she has spent in prison beyond her sentence.

However, if Al-Hathloul reoffended she would be tried for the new crimes in addition to having to serve the suspended period of the current sentence, he said.

The Criminal Court rejected a lawsuit filed by Al-Hathloul alleging she was tortured in prison. The court rejected this following investigations by the Public Prosecution, which involved interrogation of prison officials and fellow detainees.

The Public Prosecution also reviewed the recordings of the surveillance cameras during the period of Al-Hathloul’s hunger strike in Al-Ha’ir prison as she claimed that she was tortured by being deprived of sleep.

 


Saudi minister of state for foreign affairs meets with Ireland’s FM

Saudi minister of state for foreign affairs meets with Ireland’s FM
Updated 18 min 42 sec ago

Saudi minister of state for foreign affairs meets with Ireland’s FM

Saudi minister of state for foreign affairs meets with Ireland’s FM

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir on Wednesday held a meeting at the ministry’s headquarters in Riyadh with the Irish Foreign and Defense Minister Simon Coveney.

The two sides discussed during the meeting bilateral relations and means to develop them and exchanged views on regional and international matters of common interest.

Al-Jubeir organized an official luncheon for the Irish minister and his delegation.

The meeting and luncheon were attended by the Director General of the European Administration Sultan bin Khuzaim, the Irish Ambassador to Saudi Arabia John Gerard McCoy and the delegation accompanying the Irish minister.

 


Who’s Who: Meshaal bin Omairah, CEO of Abdullah Al-Othaim Investment Co.

Who’s Who: Meshaal bin Omairah, CEO of Abdullah Al-Othaim Investment Co.
Updated 34 min 58 sec ago

Who’s Who: Meshaal bin Omairah, CEO of Abdullah Al-Othaim Investment Co.

Who’s Who: Meshaal bin Omairah, CEO of Abdullah Al-Othaim Investment Co.

Meshaal bin Omairah was recently appointed as chief executive officer of Abdullah Al-Othaim Investment Co.

A financial expert with more than 25 years of experience in multinational and multidivisional companies, he also has specialist business skills in motivational etiquette, organization, analytics, and time management.

In addition, as a management professional his areas of knowledge include organizational development, corporate governance (strategic and financial), capital and funding optimization, financial engineering and restructuring, corporate risk assessment, and consultancy.

Bin Omairah has been a member of the Saudi Fisheries Co.’s audit committee since December 2017, and chairman of the audit and risk committee at Aljazierah Home Appliances since November 2018.

He previously served as chairman of the audit and risk committee and a member of the board of directors at both Rajhi Steel and the Global Beverage Co.

He has sat on the board of Manafea Holding since 2018 and is chairman of the company’s audit committee, and was CEO and a board member of Mohammed Abdul Aziz Al-Rajhi and Sons Investment Co.

Since January 2018, he has been an advisory board member at Bank Muscat and has been vice chairman and a member of the board of directors at Falcon Plastic Products Co. since September 2016.

Other board memberships and audit and executive committee roles held by Bin Omairah have been at the Benaa company for building materials, Jesco, Ardiseis, Sanjel International Saudi Arabia, the Arabian Geophysical and Surveying Co., and Air Liquide Arabia LLC.

He gained a bachelor’s degree in accounting from King Saud University and certificates in corporate governance and global management via INSEAD.


Saudi Arabia, US committed to addressing climate challenge with urgency: Joint statement

Saudi Arabia, US committed to addressing climate challenge with urgency: Joint statement
Updated 16 June 2021

Saudi Arabia, US committed to addressing climate challenge with urgency: Joint statement

Saudi Arabia, US committed to addressing climate challenge with urgency: Joint statement
  • The joint statement came after the US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry visited the Kingdom
  • The two countries will work to strengthen the implementation of the Paris Agreement

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia and the US are committed to addressing the increasing climate challenge with “seriousness and urgency,” a joint statement said on Wednesday.
The two countries will work to strengthen the implementation of the Paris Agreement and actively promote a successful G20 in Italy and UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow.
They also affirmed the importance of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and taking action during the 2020s to avoid the worst consequences of climate change.
The joint statement came after the US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry visited the Kingdom where he met with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Wednesday and Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir on Tuesday.
Saudi Arabia and the US said they intended to work together to actively support and engage bilaterally on the Saudi Green Initiative and the Middle East Green Initiative, including on clean energy, sustainable agriculture, and land use.
The countries will also collaborate on accelerating the deployment of renewable energy and low-emissions power systems in the region, encourage private sector partnerships, and support ocean-based and nature-based solutions for addressing both mitigation and adaptation.
The two sides also aim to cooperate on the potential of clean hydrogen to address the hardest to abate sectors and to partner to accelerate clean hydrogen’s development and deployment.


GCC foreign ministers: Iran missile program should be addressed in nuclear talks

GCC foreign ministers: Iran missile program should be addressed in nuclear talks
Updated 16 June 2021

GCC foreign ministers: Iran missile program should be addressed in nuclear talks

GCC foreign ministers: Iran missile program should be addressed in nuclear talks

RIYADH: Talks in Vienna on the Iran nuclear deal should take into consideration Tehran’s ballistic missile program, Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) foreign ministers said on Wednesday.
GCC countries should also be included in the dialogue, a meeting of the ministerial council in Riyadh heard.
The foreign ministers condemned Tehran for smuggling weapons to its proxy militia in Yemen - the Houthis. And they denounced attacks carried out by the militia in Yemen’s Marib province.
They also condemned the Houthis for obstructing the arrival of an international team to examine the decaying FSO Safer tanker that is moored off Yemen’s coast.
The tanker was abandoned more than five years ago and its structure, equipment and operating systems are deteriorating, leaving the tanker at risk of leaking, exploding or catching fire.
With 48 million gallons of oil on board, the UN warns a potential leak would be four times bigger than the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster off the coast of Alaska, considered the world’s worst oil spill in terms of environmental damage.
The foreign ministers also said they reject foreign interference in the affairs of Arab countries and any actions that affect the water rights of Egypt and Sudan.
They also condemned the increase of drug smuggling from Lebanon after the Kingdom banned the import and transit of fruit and vegetables from the crisis-stricken country after authorities foiled two large drug smuggling attempts in April.


Saudi Arabia announces 15 more COVID-19 deaths

Saudi Arabia announces 15 more COVID-19 deaths
Updated 16 June 2021

Saudi Arabia announces 15 more COVID-19 deaths

Saudi Arabia announces 15 more COVID-19 deaths
  • The total number of recoveries in the Kingdom has increased to 451,187
  • A total of 7,621 people have succumbed to the virus in the Kingdom so far

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia announced 15 deaths from COVID-19 and 1,239 new infections on Wednesday.
Of the new cases, 371 were recorded in Makkah, 253 in Riyadh, 229 in the Eastern Province, 98 in Asir, 83 in Jazan, 71 in Madinah, 32 in Najran, 17 in Al-Baha, 17 in Hail, 10 in the Northern Borders region, nine in Tabuk, and five in Al-Jouf.
The total number of recoveries in the Kingdom increased to 451,187 after 932 more patients recovered from the virus.
A total of 7,621 people have succumbed to the virus in the Kingdom so far.
Over 16.1 million doses of a coronavirus vaccine have been administered in the Kingdom to date.