Expats collecting donations through social media illegally to be deported

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Saudi Gazette report: RIYADH – Expatriates found engaged in collecting donations in an illegal way will be deported, the Ministry of Interior has warned.

“The concerned security authorities have been authorized to carry out investigation and arrest all those involved in the collection of donations in cash and kind illegally,” the security spokesman at the ministry said in a statement carried by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) on Monday.

The spokesman urged citizens and expatriates to take utmost caution while responding to any unauthorized calls to raise funds for any purpose because these donations might reach some dubious agencies or may be ploys for cheating and swindling.

The ministry issued this warning in the wake of appeals for donations appearing on various platforms of social media and the Internet.

“This is in clear violation of the directives that govern collection of donations in cash and kind in the Kingdom,” the spokesman said.

He noted that the Kingdom is showing utmost keenness in the case of the Syrian refugees by raising funds through the National Campaign to Support the Brothers in Syria. In addition to this, there are authorized agencies to provide assistance to them in line with the legal procedures to ensure distribution of help to the deserving people, and these agencies included the Saudi Red Crescent Authority, the Muslim World League and the International Islamic Relief Organization, the spokesman added.

Earlier this month, the Council of Ministers approved the draft penal law for terror crimes and their funding. The law gives an exact definition of terrorism and its funding and spells out the procedures that must be taken while dealing with a terror suspect, but ensuring human rights.

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In February, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry issued 43 precautionary measures aimed at combating money laundering and terror funding.

Accordingly, diplomats will no longer enjoy immunity in case they are found involved in any suspicious transactions. The ministry directed that any one — Saudis or foreigners — including those having a diplomatic ID, will be subjected to investigation if they are found involved in any suspicious activities such as money laundering and terror funding.

The ministry’s regulations are mainly aimed at protecting companies and firms engaged in commercial activities from any illegal or suspicious transactions or preventing them from taking part in such dealings. The ministry asked these firms to take utmost vigil and caution in case they notice any suspicious activities related to money laundering or terror funding on the part of any customers. (Saudi Gazette)

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