Time News Desk: The former lawyer of slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi has left the United Arab Emirates for the US after his jail sentence for money laundering was quashed, his lawyer told AFP Saturday.
Asim Ghafoor, a US citizen who has worked on a number of national security and terrorism cases, has paid a five million dirham ($1.4 million) fine, his lawyer Faisal Gill said.
Ghafoor was jailed and fined last month after his arrest, reportedly while transiting Dubai airport.
On Wednesday, the Abu Dhabi Money Laundering and Tax Evasion Court upheld Ghafoor’s conviction over ‘money-laundering crimes linked to a US-based tax evasion operation’, the official WAM news agency said.
The court rescinded Ghafoor’s three-year jail term but raised the three million dirham fine against him to five million dirhams and ordered his deportation.
Ghafoor runs a private law firm and is a board member of Democracy for the Arab World Now, or DAWN, a rights group founded by Khashoggi that called for the lawyer’s release in July.
He has defended businesspeople, charity leaders and institutions against allegations of involvement in the 9/11 terror attacks in the United States, according to DAWN’s website.