Iran holds the first hearing in the trial of Iranian billionaire Babak Zanjani, who is facing corruption charges.
The court session opened Saturday in branch 15 of the Revolutionary Court of Tehran, 630 days after his arrest.
Zanjani was arrested on December 30, 2013 after 12 Iranian lawmakers accused him of corruption, calling for an inquiry into his financial activities in a letter to the heads of the three branches of the Iranian government.
According to the indictment against him, the billionaire is faced with charges including “corruption on earth,” massive fraud at Iran’s Oil Ministry and money laundering.
Experts say the estimated net worth of his assets is around USD 13.8 billion. The corporate mogul, aged 42, owns and operates many holdings and companies, including the UAE-based Sorinet group, Qeshm Airlines and Rah Ahan Soccer Club in Iran.
Iran’s Oil Ministry says Zanjani still owes more than two billion euros for the oil exports he handled on behalf of the former government after the US and the EU imposed sanctions on Iran’s oil industry in 2012 over the country’s nuclear activities.
Iranian Judiciary spokesman Gholam Hossein Mohseni-Ejei has previously said the billionaire refrained from cooperating with judiciary officials.
Meanwhile, during the Saturday session, bills of indictment against two other individuals involved in the case were also read out. The two men are accused of corruption on earth that is punishable by death under the Iranian Constitution.
By Press Tv