Briton faces public beheading

Four men held in connection with bombings targeting Britons in Saudi Arabia are facing public beheadings if found guilty.

United Arab Emirates minister Prince Nayef said Saudi authorities viewed the bombings as terrorist attacks and strict Islamic laws would apply if the suspects are tried.

Briton Sandy Mitchell, 44, confessed on television earlier this month that he and Canadian William Sampson, 42, were responsible for a blast in Riyadh which killed fellow Briton Christopher Rodway on November 17 last year.

Mr Mitchell, reportedly from the Glasgow area, said he was also involved with Sampson and a Belgian man, identified as Raaf Schifte, in a second Riyadh car bombing on November 22.

Gary Dixon, 55, also known as Gary O'Nions, an associate of Mr Mitchell, is fighting extradition to Saudi Arabia from a jail in Dubai in connection with the two bombings.

Mr Dixon, who moved to Saudi Arabia 15 years ago from Beverley, near Hull, fled to Dubai from Saudi Arabia last April after being arrested under suspicion of illegally manufacturing and distributing alcohol.

He has been held in prison in Dubai for seven months.

Under Saudi Arabia's interpretation of sharia, convicted murderers are publicly beheaded.

The victim's family can demand an execution, spare the convict's life or ask for money in exchange for clemency.