French court frees Kadhafi aide accused of embezzlement
Versailles: A French court on Wednesday
freed Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi's former protocol chief,
who was arrested in France at the request of Tripoli on
suspicion of embezzlement.
The court in Versailles hearing Libya's extradition
request ordered Nuri Al-Mismari to be freed because it said
his detention since his arrest late last month was "irregular"
for technical reasons.
The judge said that because the detention was ordered
by the prosecutor's office it was not in line with a ruling
from the European Court of Human Rights, and he said the
French Justice Ministry had "intervened".
Al-Mismari repeated in court that he was innocent of
the crimes that Libya accuses him of and that he had come to
France for treatment for a heart condition.
The court informed Al-Mismari of the international
arrest warrant issued for him on behalf of Libya, which
accuses him of embezzling state funds.
Al-Mismari told the court that he refused to be
extradited. A further extradition hearing has been scheduled
fo December 23.
"I am innocent of everything that Libya accuses me
of," Al-Mismari told the court. "The protocol office does not
manage public funds because the budget of the office comes
under the responsibility of the Finance Ministry."