Sudanese former president Omar al-Bashir appeared once again on Saturday in court facing corruption and illegal possession of foreign currency charges after more details were revealed over the huge sum of money found in his home.
Al Bashir, who was removed from power by the army following widespread protests and was arrested on 11 April and taken to the capital’s high-security Kobar prison, was in possession of 6.9 million euros, $351,000 and 5.7 million Sudanese pounds (about $126,000) all found in his residence, a lawyer from the Sudanese prosecutor's office said during the trial.
Mutasim Abdullah said military intelligence asked him to go to al-Bashir's house, where he had found suitcases full of money.
Abdullah asked for an accountant from Omdurman National Bank to count the money, a process that was supervised by the military according to the country’s official news agency SUNA.
“The Armed Forces was entrusted with the task of counting the exact amount and verifying the figures seized by the former president,” SUNA said.
During al-Bashir’s first hearing held on 19 August, a Sudanese police investigator said that according to the preliminary investigations, the dictator had received $91 million as a “gift” form Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
$25 million out of which were received from Saudi crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, while $65 million came from late Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.
UAE President Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan had signed a $1 million cheque to the ousted Sudanese president.
Meanwhile, al-Bashir’s defense, Mohamed Hasan al-Amin, assured the press that the money found was given to the 75-year-old president in the framework of cooperation between presidents.
He added that al-Bashir did not spend not one dollar on himself.
Instead, he allocated the money to “necessary measures related to national security.”
According to SUNA, the defense requested al-Bashir’s release on bail and the judge had submitted the request for consideration.
On 13 June, the Sudanese General Prosecutor’s office officially charged al-Bashir of illegal possession of money.
The African dictator could also face charges of repressing demonstrators, who ended his 30-year term.
A hike in the price of basic commodities sparked rallies in December last year, which gathered momentum and spread across the country as thousands took to the streets in a rare display of defiance, calling for the resignation of al-Bashir, who took the helm in 1989 after a coup. EFE