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UK judge orders extradition of businessman suspected of funneling Libyan cash to Sarkzoy

Niklas Halle'n, AFP | French businessman Alexandre Djouhri in London on February 26, 2019

A British judge on Tuesday ordered the extradition of a French businessman suspected of funneling money from former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi to finance Nicolas Sarkozy’s successful 2007 presidential campaign.

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Alexandre Djouhri is wanted by France over a string of allegations, including active corruption of a foreign public official, conspiracy to misappropriate public funds and money-laundering.

The case is connected to accusations that former president Sarkozy received money from Gaddafi to fund his campaign, allegations he has denied.

“I am satisfied that there is no or insufficient evidence that the French authorities have manipulated or used procedures to oppress or unfairly prejudice Mr Djouhri,” Judge Vanessa Baraitser wrote in her ruling at London’s Westminster Magistrates’ Court.

“I therefore order the extradition to France of Alexandre Djouhri.”

Djouhri was arrested at London’s Heathrow Airport in January 2018, but was later granted conditional release over concerns for his health due to heart problems.

He said that he plans to appeal the decision.

"They've set up a trap to arrest me here," Djouhri told the AFP before Tuesday’s hearing.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP, REUTERS)

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