search

Swiss prosecutors seek 5-year sentence for French-Israeli mining magnate Steinmetz

Israeli diamond magnate Beny Steinmetz (left) and his lawyer Daniel Kinzer arrive at a courthouse in Geneva, Switzerland, August 29, 2022. (Salvatore Di Nolfi/Keystone via AP)
Israeli diamond magnate Beny Steinmetz (left) and his lawyer Daniel Kinzer arrive at a courthouse in Geneva, Switzerland, August 29, 2022. (Salvatore Di Nolfi/Keystone via AP)

Swiss prosecutors demand that a French-Israeli businessman serve his prison sentence in a vast corruption case involving Guinea mining rights, while his defense insists he is innocent.

In an impassioned closing statement, chief prosecutor Yves Bertossa tells the Geneva appeals court he maintains his request for Beny Steinmetz to serve five years behind bars, decrying his role in a “pact of corruption.”

The 66-year-old mining tycoon, who made his fortune in diamonds, was already sentenced by a lower court in January 2021 to a five-year prison term and ordered to pay 50 million Swiss francs ($52 million) in compensation. He was found guilty of setting up a complex financial web to pay bribes to ensure his company could obtain permits in Guinea’s southeastern Simandou region, which is estimated to contain the world’s biggest untapped iron ore deposits.

Earlier today, Steinmetz’s lawyer Daniel Kinzer slammed the prosecution’s case as “very weak,” insisting that the lower court had reached “an erroneous and unjust conclusion.”

“He is innocent… There is no criminal offense,” he said in his closing statement, urging the judges to look at the facts “with fresh eyes.”

Never miss breaking news on Israel
Get notifications to stay updated
You're subscribed
image
Register for free
and continue reading
Registering also lets you comment on articles and helps us improve your experience. It takes just a few seconds.
Already registered? Enter your email to sign in.
Please use the following structure: example@domain.com
Or Continue with
By registering you agree to the terms and conditions. Once registered, you’ll receive our Daily Edition email for free.
Register to continue
Or Continue with
Log in to continue
Sign in or Register
Or Continue with
check your email
Check your email
We sent an email to you at .
It has a link that will sign you in.