Home | News    Saturday 25 October 2003

Ten men to be hanged in Sudan, 15 others jailed for dealing in army weapons

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KHARTOUM, Oct 25 (AFP) — A special tribunal in Port Sudan has sentenced 10 men, including seven soldiers, to death by hanging and 15 others to jail for trafficking in army weapons, press reports said Saturday.

Independent Al Ayam daily said the defendants were convicted Thursday of smuggling, selling, buying or illegally dealing in weapons out of a garrison warehouse in Jebait, near Port Sudan, over the past five years.

Among those convicted was the storekeeper of the warehouse, from which more than 1,000 Kalashnikov assault rifles, hundreds of submachine guns and pistols, all estimated to be worth 30 billion Sudanese pounds (about 12 million dollars) were smuggled and sold to arms dealers.

Those jailed received sentences ranging from 18 months to 14 years, as well as fines.

Independent Akhbar Al Youm daily quoted the prosecutor as saying the sentences were harsh because of the gravity of the crimes, which involved placing weapons in the hands of civilians in the east of the country. He said this is an opposition target and borders on Eritrea, which hosts opposition forces.

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