Four jailed for bribery in Jordan

Four men were convicted yesterday in a multi-million-dollar bribery case involving expansion plans for Jordan's only oil refinery. Those convicted are:

  • Adel Qudah, a former finance minister and former chairman of the Jordan Petroleum Refinery Company (JPRC)

  • Ahmad Rifai, former director general of JPRC

  • Mohammad Rawashdeh, the prime minister’s economic adviser

  • Khaled Shaheen (or Shahin), a billionaire businessman who is head of the Shaheen Business and Investment Group (SBIG).

All were given three-year sentences – a relatively light penalty considering the seriousness of the case – and are free on bail 
pending an appeal.

The background to the case was explained in a previous postingon this blog.

The trial is widely seen as signalling a tougher approach to corruption by the Jordanian government but there have been efforts to minimise media coverage of the case – possibly so as not to deter foreign investors in Jordan.

Posted by Brian Whitaker, 7 July 2010.