"Their files will be the catalog of every untoward incident, from the truly illegal to the maybe just embarrassing," Mr. Riedel said. While Western officials presume that Mr. Aljabri's knowledge of those secrets lies behind the crown prince's efforts to return him to Saudi Arabia, two people briefed on his case, one American and one Saudi, said that Saudi authorities have justified the efforts by accusing Mr. Aljabri of corruption. The two people, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to share the information, said that Mr. Aljabri is accused of using his position to amass a personal fortune and that the prince wanted the money back. The Saudi authorities have not made public any corruption allegations against Mr. Aljabri. Prince Mohammed rocketed to power after his father, King Salman, ascended the throne in 2015, and Mr. Aljabri's standing faltered as Prince Mohammed's rose.
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia exchanged laughs and clasped hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday in an incongruously celebratory moment as they took their seats among other world leaders for a meeting in Buenos Aires during an economic summit. It was the surest sign yet that the crown prince can still expect a warm welcome from at least some heads of state even after American intelligence agencies and many Western officials have concluded that he authorized the killing of Jamal Khashoggi, a Virginia resident and Washington Post columnist ambushed two months ago by Saudi agents in a consulate in Istanbul. The prince has denied advanced knowledge of the killing. The Group of 20 summit meeting, a gathering of the leaders of the world's largest economies, is a closely watched test for Crown Prince Mohammed, the 33-year-old favorite son of the aging King Salman and de facto ruler of the oil-rich kingdom. An Argentine prosecutor has begun an inquiry into potential criminal charges against the crown prince for human rights abuses, including allegations that he was responsible for the torture of Mr. Khashoggi and certain Saudi prisoners, as well as for war crimes committed by Saudi-led forces fighting in Yemen.