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Iran Sentences Billionaire to Death for Corruption

  • VOA News

A picture made available on March 6, 2016 shows Iran's billionaire tycoon Babak Zanjani (C) in a court, in Tehran.

An Iranian court has sentenced a billionaire and two other people to death for corruption involving oil sales.

Babak Zanjani is believed to be one of Iran's wealthiest people with a net worth estimated at $14 billion. He was accused of pocketing more than $2 billion while making oil sales on behalf of former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's government.

He was arrested in 2013, shortly after current President Hassan Rouhani took office and put a priority on tackling corruption.

The three men convicted Sunday can appeal the verdict.

Two years ago, Iran hanged billionaire businessman Mahafarid Amir Khosravi after convicting him of using forged documents to obtain credit at Iran's top financial institutions in a $2.6 billion scam.