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Tunisian military court sentences former president to 5 years in prison

(Xinhua)

14:24, December 01, 2011

TUNIS, Nov. 30 (Xinhua) -- A Tunis military court has sentenced the country's deposed President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali to five years in prison in absentia, the official press agency TAP reported Wednesday.

Ben Ali was sentenced to five years in prison for the torture of army officers who were arrested in an alleged plot to overthrow his regime in 1991.

Meanwhile, a military court in El Kef, some 250 km from the capital, adjourned the trial on Wednesday involving Ben Ali and 22 of his close aids to Dec. 22.

The defendants are accused of voluntary manslaughter involving the death of 22 demonstrators who were shot in uprisings earlier this year in the towns of Kasserine and Thala. All the defendants have pleaded not guilty, TAP said.

Ben Ali, his wife Leila Trabelsi and a number of his relatives have already been convicted by a civilian court for corruption, money laundering, embezzlement and traffic in archeological artifacts, among other charges.

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