A Sudanese judge on Saturday formally indicted Omar al-Bashir for possessing illicit foreign currency and corruption, charges the ousted leader challenged as he was publicly questioned for the first time since his overthrow, Trend reports citing Reuters.
Bashir said that he had received $25 million from Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, as well as funds from other sources, but that he had not received or used the money for his own benefit.
A lawyer for Bashir said that his client denied the charges against him and that witnesses for the defense would be presented at the next hearing.
The judge denied a request for bail and said a decision on the duration of Bashir’s detention would be taken at a hearing on Sept. 7. Foreign currency held by Bashir was illicit and had been transferred illegally, he said.
Millions of euros and Sudanese pounds were found at Bashir’s residence in April when he was toppled and arrested, a judicial source said at the time.
Sudan’s military ousted Bashir after months of protests across the country. His prosecution is seen as a test of how far military and civilian authorities now sharing power will go to counter the legacy of his 30-year rule.