Tunisia: 10 More Years for Ex-President Already Sentenced to Life in Prison

Former Tunisian president Zine el Abidine Ben Ali and his wifeboth several times convicted in absencehave been handed fresh prison sentences for corruption, media reported Friday.

Zine El Abidine Ben AliFormer President of Tunisia Zine El Abidine Ben Ali (Photo: Presendencia de la Nacion Argentia CC BY 2.0)

A spokesman for the prosecution told AFP that a court in Tunis sentenced the pair on Thursday to 10 years in prison for "administrative and financial corruption."

The dictator ruled Tunisia for 23 years before he was forced to flee during the 2011 revolution that kick-started the Arab Spring.

He has been living with his wife in exile in Saudi Arabia and has since been convicted at home several times including a life sentence for the deaths of 338 protesters during the revolution.

The latest case involved Ben Ali’s wife, Leila Trabelsi, who used Club Elyssa, which is situated in a state-owned park, for "commercial" purposes including social gatherings.

Club Elyssa was also used in November to hold the first public hearings for the Truth and Dignity Commission on human rights violations during six decades of dictatorship.

Three more people were convicted in the case, two government officials and a relative of Trabelsi. They received shorter sentences between three and five years.