Algerian Court Sentences Former President Bouteflika’s Brother To Prison

World

The powerful younger brother of deposed Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika was sentenced to two years in prison on Tuesday for “obstructing the course of justice,” the official APS news agency reported.

President Bouteflika was forced to resign amid massive protests against his bid for a fifth term in office in 2019, and died in September at the age of 84.

His departure was followed by a series of prosecutions against high-ranking members of his inner circle, most notably his brother Said, who had been seen as the true power behind the throne after the ruler suffered a stroke in 2013.

The prosecution had requested seven years in prison for Said, who was charged with other former officials for “abuse of power”, “incitement to falsify official documents”, “obstruction of justice” and “contempt of court”.

The main defendant at the trial in Dar El Beida, east of Algiers, was former Justice Minister Tayeb Louh.

He was sentenced to six years in prison, while tycoon Ali Haddad was sentenced to two years, APS said. Both were close to the former president.

Former justice ministry inspector general Tayeb Belhachemi was also sentenced to two years in prison.

The court acquitted six other defendants.

Said Bouteflika, 63, was arrested in May 2019 and sentenced to 15 years for “conspiring against the state and the army” during the last days of his brother’s rule.

On January 2, he was acquitted of those charges by a military appeals court, but was turned over to a civil court to face trial on corruption charges.

(AFP)

 

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