BEIRUT

Regional

Switzerland freezes $300 mln from Mubarak sons

TOPSHOTS Gamal (L) and Alaa Mubarak, sons of ousted president Hosni Mubarak, sit behind bars during their trial in the police academy in the outskirts of Cairo on July 9, 2012. (AFP PHOTO/STR)

GENEVA: Swiss authorities have frozen $300 million sitting in Credit Suisse accounts in Geneva held by the sons of deposed Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, the newspaper Le Matin Dimanche reported Sunday.

The funds are held in accounts belonging to Alaa and Gamal Mubarak, sons of the former president who are currently being held in an Egyptian prison.

The brothers are accused of using their position as scions of Egypt’s longtime ruler to help themselves to villas, luxury cars and stakes in the country’s key companies.

According to the newspaper, the funds were deposited at the Credit Suisse in 2005, which was after Switzerland tightened rules governing transactions by politically exposed depositors.

A Credit Suisse spokesman refused comment, citing the bank’s policy.

The paper said Egypt-linked funds had also been frozen at the Swiss office of French banking giant BNP Paribas.

Switzerland has opened a probe targeting 14 people close to the Mubarak regime who are suspected of embezzling public funds and wide-scale corruption.

Earlier this month, Swiss authorities refused to provide their Egyptian government counterparts with access to their findings so far, citing concerns for the “institutional situation” in Cairo.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on December 31, 2012, on page 5.

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