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Sudan: 1st Figure from Former Bashir Regime Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison

Sudan: 1st Figure from Former Bashir Regime Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison

Tuesday, 20 April, 2021 - 08:45
Ousted President Bashir appears in court in February. (Getty Images)

A Sudanese court sentenced to prison on Monday the first figure from the regime of ousted President Omar al-Bashir.

Abdul Basit Hamza was convicted of money laundering, terrorist financing, trading in foreign currency and unlawful and suspicious enrichment. He was sentenced to ten years in jail and a fine.

According to the indictment, Hamza is one of Sudan’s Islamist security leaders and had operated as “an independent businessman.”

He had invested money from looted public funds in the Islamic Movement (the Sudanese version of the Muslim Brotherhood). His wealth is estimated at billions of dollars.

The Public Prosecution said Hamza was convicted under articles of the Unlawful and Suspicious Enrichment Act of 1989 and was sentenced to five years in prison.

The court also condemned him under Article 35 of the Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Act, sentencing him to another five years.

Hamza worked for the so-called “Islamic Movement Cell in the Sudanese Army” and exploited his influence to loot more than two billion dollars, reports quoted member of the committee for dismantling the ousted June 30 regime Salah Manna as saying.

As Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Sudanese Mobile Telephone Company (MOBITEL), Hamza controlled the telecommunications sector in the country, Manna added.

He revealed that the detainee helped sell the company to foreign investors at a price that does not exceed 10 percent of its real value.

“He then invested public funds in several African countries, from which Sudan gained nothing.”

In April 2020, the committee froze Hamza and his family members’ bank accounts and restored shares in several companies.

Hamza owned the Friendship Palace Hotel and the surrounding areas in Khartoum, as well as land in other parts of the capital. He held the majority of shares of the Salam Rotana Hotel and the Afra Mall and a large number of shares at the MTN Sudan Telecommunication Company.

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