On July 4, 2011, former Tunisian president Zine Al Abidine Ben Ali was sentenced in absentia to 15 years in prison on charges of illegal possession of drugs, weapons and stolen artifacts. Previously, Ben Ali and his wife had been found guilty of theft and unlawful possession of money and jewelry. Their sentence on that conviction was 35 years in prison and a fine of $65.6 million, to which Ben Ali's 15 year sentence will be added. Ben Ali fled to Saudi Arabia after leaving office and has continued to deny the charges against him.
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Learn more about Ben Ali and the protests in Tunisia from the JURIST news archive.