Considered among the biggest judicial scandals in the history of Algeria, to which can be added the equally scary case of the East-West highway, the cases of Sonatrach and Khalifa Bank will be reviewed shortly by the Supreme Court.
This procedure is part of the anti-corruption process, which has seen spectacular trials launched since the end of May, with prosecutions affecting corrupt senior government officials who worked under the sway of former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika.
Several former country officials including Said Bouteflika, Ahmed Ouyahia, Amar Ghoul, and former UGTA boss Sidi Said among others will be brought before justice to answer for their misdeeds in the flabbergasting Khalifa Bank bribery case, also dubbed as “the case of the century” by many observers.
The other coarse case to which the Supreme Court will address its ins and outs will concern the judicial scandal behind which the so called “Golden Boy”, now detained Abdelmoumène Khalifa, the businessman by whom the Khalifa Bank scandal broke out causing a huge stir among the national public opinion.
Having taken up the case, on 23 June 2015, the Criminal Court of the Blida jurisdiction handed down prison sentences, ranging from 18 years to 1 year suspended, against 18 defendants involved in the case.
In parallel, 53 other defendants had benefited from the acquittal. The former CEO of the Khalifa group, Abdelmoumène Khalifa, had been sentenced to 18 years’ imprisonment, with a fine of DA 1 million and the confiscation of all his property. In addition, he was acquitted on the charge of “abuse of influence”.
Abdelmoumène Khalifa, the former CEO of the Khalifa group, was not present at the 2007 trial and was prosecuted for criminal conspiracy, multiple thefts, fraud, forgery and use of forgeries in bank records, breach of trust, influence peddling, corruption, embezzlement and bankruptcy fraud.
In June 2007, a judgment in absentia was handed down by the Blida Criminal Court which sentencing him to life imprisonment with confiscation of all his property.
A total of 71 defendants, five of whom died, had filed appeals with the Supreme Court in the verdicts handed down in June 2007, knowing that 21 detainees are involved in this case while the number of witnesses exceeded 300, in addition to the plaintiffs claiming damages and victims.