Luxembourg opens criminal inquiry into Lebanon cenbank governor

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BEIRUT – Luxembourg judicial authorities have opened “a criminal case” in relation to Lebanese Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh and his companies and assets, a judicial spokesperson in the small European Union country said on Monday.

The spokesperson, who disclosed the inquiry in an email to Reuters, gave no further details on the investigation. A spokesperson for Lebanon’s central bank said Salameh had not been informed of any case against him in Luxembourg and declined further comment.

Salameh is already under at least two European investigations, including a Swiss inquiry opened in January over alleged “aggravated money laundering” at the central bank involving $300 million in gains by a company owned by Salameh’s brother.

French prosecutors opened a preliminary investigation into money laundering allegations against Salameh in late May. Salameh’s lawyer denied the allegations, calling them politically motivated.

Salameh has previously denied any wrongdoing in connection with the investigations.

He has faced increased scrutiny of his 28-year tenure as central bank governor due to the collapse of Lebanon’s financial system.

Reuters

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