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France releases in-law of Tunisia's Ben Ali on bail

AFP  |  Marseille 

has released Trabelsi, of ousted Tunisian Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali, on bail while it mulls a extradition request from Tunisia, sources said Sunday.

Lawyers and said they had obtained Trabelsi's conditional release "owing to procedural problems", confirming initially announced by the Tunisian justice ministry.

Trabelsi, 56, who faced charges of organised money laundering and has paid 100,000 euros (USD 112,000) in bail, must remain in and report regularly to a local police station, they added.

It was the second time that an appeals court in Aix-en-Provence, southeastern France, had ordered his release from a jail in

The first time was on March 28, but before walked free, the Aix-en-Provence arrested him again based on a February 2017 warrant issued by a Tunisian

Tunisia's extradition request refers to a series of convictions in absentia and three 10-year sentences handed down between February 2017 and June 2018 for financial crimes.

A Tunisian has accused of "pillaging Tunisian businesses" alongside

Trabelsi, whose holdings included hotels and an airline, has denied the allegations against him, saying he accumulated his wealth legally.

A leaked US diplomatic cable in 2008 described and his family as a "quasi-mafia" involved in a series of suspect businesses and deals.

The millionaire and brother of Ben Ali's wife left in January 2011 when the Arab Spring uprising forced the veteran leader to flee to

Trabelsi and his family flew in a private jet to to seek Canadian political asylum, a request that was denied twice.

He disappeared in June 2016 just days before he was to be expelled from Canada, and was arrested in southern in March 2019.

France's hearing of the Tunisian extradition request is expected to be held in June.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, May 12 2019. 19:16 IST