Sunday 10 December 2017

Tunisia ex-minister sentenced to jail for graft

Tunisia ex-minister sentenced to jail for graft
(AFP (eng) 05/13/17)
Tunisia ex-minister sentenced to jail for graft

A Tunis court has sentenced Ridha Grira, the last defence minister under ousted president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, to six years in jail for corruption, the judiciary said Friday.

Spokesman Sofiene Sliti told AFP that the verdict against the 61-year-old "fugitive" was issued late Thursday by a court which also ordered him to pay a fine of 402,000 dinars ($164,000/150,000 euros).

Grira was jailed in September 2011 over corruption cases linked to the Ben Ali regime which was overthrown in a popular uprising that year.

But in March 2014 a court ordered his release, as he was suffering from cancer.

The Tunisian League for the Defence of Human Rights group had called for his release because of his poor health.

Relatives and former officials in the government of Ben Ali, who fled with his wife to Saudi Arabia in early 2011, were jailed after the uprising but some managed to be freed subsequently on health grounds.

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