Graft trial of son of Senegal's ex-president to start in June

Reuters News
Posted: Apr 16, 2014 8:48 PM

DAKAR (Reuters) - Karim Wade, son of Senegal's ex-president, will go on trial in two months to face corruption charges, a year after he was accused of illegally amassing a fortune of $1.4 billion during his father's rule, a government official said.

The decision ends hopes that Wade, who was the most powerful figure in his father Abdoulaye Wade's 2000-2012 government, could see the case thrown out of the Court for Illegal Enrichment that handles corruption issues.

"The court has taken the decision for Karim Wade to face trial in two months from now," Soro Diop, an adviser to the justice ministry, told Reuters.

Diop gave no details on the charges Wade would face. Local media have speculated that the amount of money he is accused of amassing, largely through a network of shady holding companies, may be reduced.

Wade has been in prison for a year, sealing a dramatic fall from power for the former president's son, who previously ran ministries in charge of infrastructure, international cooperation, energy and air transportation.

President Macky Sall, who wrested the presidency from Wade's father in a March 2012 election, has promised to fight corruption and embezzlement in the former French colony of 13 million people.

(Reporting by Diadie Ba; Writing by David Lewis; Editing by Eric Walsh)