Uncle of Jordan's King Abdullah sentenced to 18 years in prison for corruption

Uncle of Jordan's King Abdullah sentenced to 18 years in prison for corruption
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The uncle of Jordan's King Abdullah, Walid al-Kurdi, was sentenced to 18 years in prison on Wednesday for corruption.
The uncle Walid al-Kurdi, the husband of Princess Basma Bint Talal, is a former president of the Phosphate Company [source: Getty]

A Jordanian court on Wednesday sentenced a fugitive uncle of King Abdullah II to 18 years in prison in a corruption case, a judicial official said.

Walid al-Kurdi had already been jailed for more than 37 years in 2013 for "abuse of office," after he had fled to the United Kingdom.

Kurdi is the former CEO of the Jordan Phosphate Mines Co, one of the world's largest suppliers.

He was tried in the latest case for abuse of power and corruption while he served with the company.

In addition to the new jail term, the court fined him 190 million dinars ($268 million), the judicial official said on condition of anonymity.

His previous conviction related to "sales and shipping deals", a judicial official said at the time.

The court also froze his assets in 2013.

Kurdi is married to Princess Basma, sister of Abdullah's father, the late king Hussein.

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In April last year former crown prince Hamzah, King Abdullah II's half-brother, accused the country's rulers of corruption and ineptitude. He then said he had been put under house arrest.

At the same time, authorities announced they had foiled a bid to destabilise the pro-Western kingdom and had arrested 18 suspects, though most were later released.

The royal court said that Hamzah had apologised for the events.

Last month he said he was renouncing his title of prince.