Israeli diamond tycoon convicted in Swiss corruption trial

Israeli diamond tycoon convicted in Swiss corruption trial

1/22/2021 9:26:00 PM

Israeli diamond tycoon convicted in Swiss corruption trial

A Geneva court has convicted Israeli diamond and minerals magnate Beny Steinmetz on charges of corruption of foreign agents and forging documents, in a trial centering on a bid to reap lavish iron ore resources in Guinea

in a trial over a bid to reap lavish iron ore resources in Guinea.The man considered by some to be Israeli's richest man was sentenced to five years in prison, after facing a maximum of 10 years in the case.Steinmetz, 64, denied the charges. The plot, dating to the mid-2000s, involved Steinmetz’s BSGR Group squeezing out a rival for mining rights for vast iron ore deposits in Guinea’s southeastern Simandou region.

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The case centered on alleged payouts of millions to a former wife of late President Lansana Conte, and exposed the shady and complex world of deal-making and cutthroat competition in the lucrative mining business.Wearing a mask and flanked by his lawyers, Steinmetz — who has French and Israeli citizenship — calmly listened and jotted down notes as the judge, Alexandra Banna, read the facts of the case and the verdict over two hours. Attendance in the Geneva courtroom was limited due to COVID-19 concerns.

The Geneva prosecutor’sofficealleged that Steinmetz and two other defendants engaged in corruption of foreign officials and falsification of documents to hide from authorities and banks the paying of bribes. Some of the funds allegedly transited through Switzerland — and the case has been investigated in Europe, Africa and the United States. headtopics.com

The prosecutor’s office said Steinmetz, starting in 2005, crafted a pact of corruption with Conte, who ruled the West African country from 1984 until his death in 2008, and his fourth wife, Mamadie Toure, involving the payment of nearly $10 million.Please enter your email address

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