Beggar in possession of thousands of US dollars arrested in Saudi Arabia
A female beggar who managed to collect tens of thousands of US dollars has been arrested in Saudi Arabia, the kingdom’s interior ministry announced on Monday.
The woman, who the ministry said was Asian without specifying her nationality, managed to collect around 117,000 Saudi riyals ($31,200) as well as other foreign currency and jewellery.
No further details on the arrest or the suspect were given.
Begging in Saudi Arabia is illegal as per a law passed in January last year. Those caught in the act, cooperating or organising begging activities can face a prison sentence from one year, a hefty fine of up to 100,000 Saudi riyals, or both.
Foreign nationals can face deportation after serving their sentence and are banned from re-entering the kingdom.
Saudi security forces arrested 3,719 beggars in only a week last month, between March 22 and March 30, according to the ministry.
The ministry has also warned people against giving money to people who could be disguised as beggars as this may go to funding terrorist operations, in a video posted to its Twitter account.
قد يكونون أخطر مما تظنون؛ فاجعلوا تبرعاتكم عبر الجهات المصرح لها. pic.twitter.com/vdPR8B9RPl— رئاسة أمن الدولة (@pss_ar) April 4, 2022