alexa Corruption trial of Sudan's Bashir to begin August 17 - lawyer - Daily Nation

Corruption trial of Sudan's Bashir to begin August 17 - lawyer

Wednesday July 31 2019

Omar al-Bashir

Former Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir delivers a speech on December 31, 2018, on the eve of the country's 63rd independence day, at the presidential palace in the capital Khartoum. PHOTO | ASHRAF SHAZLY | AFP 

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The trial of ousted Sudanese leader Omar al-Bashir on corruption charges will begin on August 17, his lawyer said, after the ex-president failed to appear in court Wednesday for the first session.

"Today was the first session of his trial, but the authorities were unable to bring him due to security reasons, so the judge informed us that the trial will now start on August 17," Hashim al-Gaaly said.

The head of Bashir's defence team, Ahmed Ibrahim al-Tahir, said the trial had no "political background".

"It is an absolute criminal case with a baseless accusation."

On June 16, a prosecutor had read out charges against the deposed leader in what was his first public appearance since his ouster on April 11.

Bashir faces charges related to "possessing foreign currency, corruption and receiving gifts illegally".

Tahir said that one of the charges against Bashir was related to about seven million euros which were given as a "grant by a donor and was not included in the state budget".

In April, Sudan's army ruler General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan said more than $113 million worth of cash in three currencies had been seized from Bashir's residence.

He said a team of police, army and security agents found seven million euros ($7.8 million), $350,000 and five billion Sudanese pounds ($105 million).

Bashir was ousted by the army after months of nationwide protests that erupted in December following his government's decision to triple the price of bread.