Former Iraqi transport minister sentenced on corruption charges

Kazem Al Hamami is accused of tampering with contracts and tenders during his tenure

Iraq's former minister for transport, Kazem Finjan Al Hamami.
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Former Iraqi Transport Minister Kazem Al Hamami has been sentenced to “maximum imprisonment” after he was found guilty of corruption.

Al Hamami, who was sentenced in absentia, was accused of tampering with contracts and tenders during his tenure from 2014 to 2018.

The commission said he signed a contract with a private company, on behalf of the General Company for Ports of Iraq, to rent a 67,000-square-metre plot of land for the construction of “science complex” — a deal that the commission said was against the law.

In 2018, the commission said Al Hamami had “tampered with contracts and tenders and supported a number of contractors and suppliers”.

“This led to a major loss in the dock contracts,” it said, as it called for an investigation to be conducted.

The commission did not give any additional information on Al Hamami's sentence.

Earlier in March, Iraq's judiciary issued warrants for the arrest of four former government officials over the theft of $2.5 billion in public funds — a case that was called the “heist of the century”.

The four, who include a former finance minister and former Iraqi prime minister Mustafa Al Kadhimi's staff, all live outside the country, an official at the agency told AFP.

Updated: March 10, 2023, 10:08 AM