Saudi Crown Prince Wins TIME's Person of the Year Online Reader Poll

The audience was attended by Prince Saad bin Abdullah bin Turki, Prince Turki Al-Faisal, Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz, Governor of Riyadh Region, and a number of princes.

Most of those detained in a sweeping anti-corruption drive in Saudi Arabia have agreed settlements with the authorities in exchange for a pardon, the attorney general says.

"The necessary arrangements are being finalized to conclude such agreements", Sheikh Al-Mujib said.

Campaigning for Gujarat Assembly Election 2017
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Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman launched the unprecedented purge a month ago, arresting high-level princes, businessmen, officials and military officers. "As a precautionary measure, the bank accounts of 376 individuals are frozen, all of whom are either detainees" or are linked to those held, he said.

Authorities are now negotiating with detainees, "offering them a settlement that will facilitate recouping the state's funds and assets, and eliminate the need for prolonged litigation", he added.

Saudi estimates that corruption has cost the kingdom at least $100 billion over decades. Saudi forces also grounded private jets at airports, possibly to prevent high-profile figures from leaving the country, an aviation source told AFP.

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Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman is leading the Saudi Vision 2030 to diversify the economy.

The crackdown has exposed the kingdom's once-untouchable elite to rare public scrutiny-Saudis on social media have quipped that the Ritz-Carlton was not the worst place to be trapped.

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