UK drops Saudi fraud investigation

Arms deal corruption inquiry had threatened sale of Eurofighter jets.

    BAE agreed a $19.8 billion deal with Saudi Arabia for 72 Eurofighter jets this year

    Lord Peter Goldsmith, the British attorney-general, said the decision had been made "in the wider public interest", which had to be balanced against the rule of law.
     
    He told the House of Lords that Tony Blair, the British prime minister, had agreed that the continuation of the investigation would cause "serious damage" to British-Saudi relations.
     
    He said Blair and Des Browne, the British defence secretary, "have expressed the clear view that continuation of the investigation would cause serious damage to UK/Saudi security, intelligence and diplomatic co-operation".
     
    He said this in turn "is likely to have seriously negative consequences for the UK public interest in terms of both national security and our highest priority foreign policy objectives in the Middle East".
     
    The SFO said in a statement: "No weight has been given to commercial interests or to the national economic interest."

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Meet the deported nurse aiding asylum seekers at US-Mexico border

    Meet the deported nurse helping refugees at the border

    Francisco 'Panchito' Olachea drives a beat-up ambulance around Nogales, taking care of those trying to get to the US.

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    How a homegrown burger joint pioneered a food revolution and decades later gave a young, politicised class its identity.

    'We will cut your throats': The anatomy of Greece's lynch mobs

    The brutality of Greece's racist lynch mobs

    With anti-migrant violence hitting a fever pitch, victims ask why Greek authorities have carried out so few arrests.