Shafaq News/ The Nineveh Criminal Court handed down a 15-year temporary prison sentence to the former Governor of Nineveh, Nofal Al-Akoub, on corruption charges.
Shafaq News Agency correspondent reported that several other employees of the governorate office were also sentenced to imprisonment in connection with the same case.
The charges against Al-Akoub date back to October 2020, when the Iraqi Integrity Commission issued an arrest warrant against him based on Resolution 160 of 1983 of the Judicial Investigative Commission.
The commission launched an investigation into the misappropriation of public funds before Al-Akoub's dismissal as the governor of Nineveh.
The Iraqi Integrity Commission had previously disclosed the arrest of numerous officials and employees in the government office, accusing them of embezzlement and misusing state funds. The amounts involved in the corruption scandal exceeded 76 billion Iraqi dinars.
In July 2021, the British government imposed sanctions on Nofal Al-Akoub and four others implicated in corruption cases in countries including Iraq, Equatorial Guinea, Zimbabwe, and Venezuela.
The British Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Affairs, Dominic Raab, affirmed that Al-Akoub had engaged in severe corruption during his tenure, including embezzlement of public funds meant for reconstruction and civilian support.
Raab highlighted Al-Akoub's involvement in illegally awarding contracts and state property, leading to his imprisonment in Iraq on corruption charges, including the misappropriation of five billion Iraqi dinars through fraudulent public works projects.
Corruption is a widespread problem in Iraq and has been a major obstacle to the country's development and reconstruction. Transparency International's Corruption Perception Index for 2022 ranks Iraq as the 157th most corrupt country out of 180 countries.