All four members of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (Haia) team who were involved in an attack against a couple in a Riyadh mall last Friday have been removed from field duties, the commission said on Tuesday.
A statement released by the commission said the four were also banished from Riyadh region and reassigned to administrative work as punishment, said the statement, which was issued in Arabic.
It said the measure was approved by Haia President Abdullatif Al-Asheikh upon the recommendation of a committee he earlier organized to investigate the complaint by the couple — Briton Peter Howarth Lees and his Saudi wife — that the Haia team harassed and subsequently attacked them while they were shopping at the Hiteen Plaza in Riyadh on August 29.
As found by the committee, the man who jumped onto the back of the Briton, as shown on a short videoclip of the attack that was posted on YouTube, was the head of the team.
The committee also concluded that members of the team had lied in their statement on the incident that they gave to investigators.
The committee further said the Haia team overstepped their mandate when they entered the mall.