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Mohammed al-Dahabi, Jordan’s former intelligence chief, has been sentenced to 13 years in prison for corruption.

Mohammed al-Dahabi, who was head of the intelligence service from 2005 to 2008, was accused of embezzling public funds, money laundering and abuse of office.

The court in Amman ordered him to repay nearly $30 million to the state.

Jordan’s leaders have come under pressure in recent months from street protesters demanding that corruption be tackled.

The lengthy sentence for such a high-profile figure is meant to show Jordanians that the authorities are serious about tackling the issue, observers say.

“You deserve the harshest punishment for being a traitor to the people who trusted you with a government position and state funds,” judge Nashaat Akhras told Mohammed al-Dahabi.

Mohammed al-Dahabi, Jordan's former intelligence chief, has been sentenced to 13 years in prison for corruption

Mohammed al-Dahabi, Jordan’s former intelligence chief, has been sentenced to 13 years in prison for corruption

The former spy chief was arrested in February after the Central Bank of Jordan became suspicious of the large transactions going through his account, the AP reports.

Mohammed al-Dahabi is the brother of former Prime Minister Nader al-Dahabi.

King Abdullah dissolved parliament last month in order to pave the way for early elections in response to growing calls for political reform and the end to corruption.

The king has said he is serious about reform, but one of his key opponents, the Muslim Brotherhood, is calling for the monarch’s powers to be curtailed.


Mauritania has handed Muammar Gaddafi’s former intelligence chief Abdullah al-Senussi over to the Libyan authorities, state media say.

Libya wants to try Abdullah al-Senussi for crimes allegedly committed during his time as Colonel Gaddafi’s right-hand man. He is also wanted by France and the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Mauritania previously said Abdullah al-Senussi must first face charges of illegal entry.

He fled Libya after last year’s uprising that toppled Muammar Gaddafi.

Abdullah al-Senussi was arrested on arrival in Mauritania, sparking repeated requests from the Libyan government for his return.

Libya wants to try Abdullah al-Senussi for crimes allegedly committed during his time as Colonel Gaddafi's right-hand man

Libya wants to try Abdullah al-Senussi for crimes allegedly committed during his time as Colonel Gaddafi's right-hand man

The report of his extradition was carried by state TV and the state news agency in Mauritania. There has so far been no confirmation from the Libyan authorities.

“He was extradited to Libya on the basis of guarantees given by Libyan authorities,” a Mauritanian government source told Reuters news agency, without giving details.

According to the reports, Abdullah al-Senussi was delivered to an official Libyan delegation headed by the minister of justice.

If confirmed, Abdullah al-Senussi’s extradition to Libya will be a blow for the ICC.

Not only has the court been trying to win custody of Abdullah al-Senussi, he says, it is also arguing that Colonel Muammar Gaddafi’ son Seif al-Islam should also be brought to justice at the court.

It is not known if he is still in the country although one official quoted by AP news agency said the former spy-chief left Mauritania on Wednesday on a Libya-bound flight.

A witness at the airport was quoted as saying Abdullah al-Senussi was not handcuffed and seemed in good spirits as he boarded the plane.

In March, Abdullah al-Senussi was arrested at Nouakchott airport in Mauritania after flying in from Morocco. He was disguised as a Tuareg chieftain and was carrying a fake passport.

He was later charged with illegally entering the country and using forged documents, and transferred to the civilian prison in Nouakchott. However, it is believed he has spent most of his time in Mauritania under house arrest at a private villa.

In June 2011, the ICC issued a warrant for Abdullah al-Senussi for crimes against humanity alleged to have been carried out in Benghazi, the main base of the Libyan opposition during the revolt last year.

France has already sentenced Abdullah al-Senussi to life imprisonment for the shooting down of a UTA airliner over Niger in 1989 in which 170 people were killed.

He has been accused of various human rights abuses including his alleged role in the 1996 massacre of more than 1,000 inmates at the Abu Salim prison in Tripoli.

Abdullah al-Senussi is alleged to have ordered guards standing on grated ceilings above the inmates to fire down on them, after riots broke out over demands for better food and conditions.

He is also believed to have information about Libyans kidnapped and assassinated abroad during Gaddafi’s rule, and the financing of terrorist organizations, especially in Africa.

Investigators in the US and UK also believe he may have further knowledge about the 1988 airliner bombing over Lockerbie in Scotland in which 270 people died.

Earlier this year, US House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who led a delegation to the region, said Washington had a “particular interest” in seeing Abdullah al-Senussi arrested “because of his role with the Lockerbie bombing”.


Abdullah al-Senussi, Muammar Gaddafi’s intelligence chief has been arrested in Mauritania, Libyan authorities have confirmed.

Abdullah al-Senussi, 63, was detained at Nouakchott airport, according to Mauritanian security officials

The former Libyan spy chief was Muammar Gaddafi’s brother-in-law and has been described as one of his most trusted aides.

Abdullah al-Senussi fled Libya when Gaddafi was ousted and killed last year after an uprising and months of fighting.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) issued a warrant for Abdullah al-Senussi’s arrest last year for crimes against humanity.

France said the arrest was carried out in a joint operation between French and Mauritanian authorities, and President Nicolas Sarkozy said he would request Abdullah al-Senussi’s extradition.

A French court convicted the former Libyan intelligence chief of involvement in a 1989 attack on a French plane that killed 170 people, and sentenced him to life in prison.

But Libyan authorities are also demanding his extradition.

Mauritania has not signed the ICC’s statute, and it is unclear what the country intends to do with Abdullah al-Senussi.

Mauritanian security officials said Abdullah al-Senussi was arrested during the night as he arrived on a regular flight from the Moroccan city of Casablanca on a false Malian passport.

Abdullah al-Senussi, Muammar Gaddafi's intelligence chief has been arrested in Mauritania

Abdullah al-Senussi, Muammar Gaddafi's intelligence chief has been arrested in Mauritania

Abdullah al-Senussi has been taken to the offices of the Mauritanian intelligence agency.

Libyan government spokesman Nasir al-Mani told state TV that Abdullah al-Senussi was travelling with a young man thought to be his son when he was arrested.

“The Libyan government is making contacts to demand that Abdullah al-Senussi be handed over,” said Nasir al-Mani.

Analysts say Abdullah al-Senussi could provide the most detailed insights so far into the inner workings of the Gaddafi regime.

Abdullah al-Senussi, nicknamed “the butcher”, was one of the last significant members of the regime still at large.

The former Libyan spy chief was indicted by the ICC along with Muammar Gaddafi and the leader’s son Saif al-Islam on 27 June 2011.

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi was captured in November in southern Libya and has been held by former rebels ever since.

The ICC wants him tried in The Hague but the Libyan authorities say he will receive a fair trial at home.

Libyan, Arab and Western sources describe Abdullah al-Senussi as a thuggish figure who would beat and abuse prisoners.

Abdullah al-Senussi is thought to have been responsible for purges of opponents within the regime in the 1980s and 90s, and for the deaths of 1,200 political prisoners at Tripoli’s Abu Salim prison in 1996.

He kept a low public profile during last year’s uprising, but reportedly played a key role in attempts to crush the revolt in the eastern city of Benghazi when it began last February.

There have been repeated reports of his death and capture which were later proved false.

Sources in the then opposition claimed Abdullah al-Senussi was killed in an attack by rebels in July in the Libyan capital Tripoli but later retracted the claim.

Officials in Niger said in October that he had fled through Niger into Mali, but a month later the new Libyan authorities said he had been arrested in the southern Libyan region of Sabha.

Further reports of Abdullah al-Senussi’s capture came in December but officials were unable to provide pictorial evidence.