Libya convicts Swiss businessmen to uproar

By Daily Maverick Legacy 2 December 2009

Libya has sentenced two Swiss businessmen to 16 months in jail for tax evasion and immigration offences. But behind the convictions there is a huge row over the arrest last year of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's son in Geneva. While the Libyans say the trial of the men and the Swiss "aggression" against Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's son Hannibal are not linked, his arrest sparked retaliatory measures from Libya, including the cancelling of oil contracts, the withdrawal of billions of dollars from Swiss banks, and the refusal of visas to Swiss citizens. Gaddafi Jnr and his wife were briefly held in Geneva in 2008 over allegations of abusing two servants. The charges were later dropped.  The arrest of the men has caused outrage in Switzerland. Only time will tell what will happen now. Maybe more time than it took for Hannibal to cross the Alps. Read more: BBC, The Wall Street Journal

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