Iraq panel clears senior judge over Saddam ties

AP News
Posted: Feb 19, 2013 7:33 AM

BAGHDAD (AP) — An Iraqi judicial panel has rejected a decision to remove one of the country's top judges from his post because of alleged ties to Saddam Hussein's regime.

Last week, the Justice and Accountability Committee tasked with purging government ranks of officials with ties to Saddam decided to remove judge Medhat al-Mahmoud who heads the Supreme Federal Court for his alleged role as an adviser to the late dictator.

The committee's deputy chief, Bakhtiar Omar al-Qadhi said on Tuesday that the cassation panel didn't find strong evidences of such ties and rejected the judge's dismissal.

The panel reviews decisions by al-Qadhi's committee and wields higher authority.

After the U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam in 2003, al-Mahmoud was appointed supervisor for the Justice Ministry and later oversaw all Iraqi courts.