Spanish court upholds decision to hand over Salem

The Spanish Supreme Court in Spain Wednesday ruled in favor of a previous court order to extradite businessman Hussein Salem to Egypt. Salem faces accusations of tax evasion and money laundering, and was sentenced in June to 15 years in prison for his role in Egypt's gas deal with Israel.

The court rejected Salam's request to cancel the extradition based on his Spanish citizenship. He claimed that the charges he faced in Egypt were political rather than criminal, and his lawyer demanded that the court consider the "revolutionary situation" in Egypt.

Salem and his children are charged with several crimes, including money laundering in collaboration with the former president.

Salem, a close personal friend of ousted President Hosni Mubarak, fled Egypt on 3 February, eight days before Mubarak stepped down. He was arrested in Madrid in last June for his alleged involvement in money laundering. His son Khaled and daughter Magda were arrested on related charges last July.

In January, the Spanish National Court in Madrid agreed to extradite Magda Salem to Egypt.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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