The Attorney General in Mount Lebanon, Judge Ghada Aoun, just filed charges against the governor of Lebanon’s Central Bank, Riad Salameh, with illegal enrichment and money laundering.
Judge Aoun also ordered the freeze of assets of his brother, Raja Salameh, after detaining him on Thursday with the charges of illegal enrichment and embezzlement tied to his brother.
Judge Aoun charged Riad Salameh with corruption and illegal enrichment based on the recent investigations in France.
The investigations by the French authorities uncovered that Salameh has been using for years millions in funds from Lebanon’s Central Bank for private purposes, forming companies with Ukrainian citizen Anna K., alleged to be the mother of a child of his, and buying real-estates worth millions of dollars.
Riad Salameh did not show up for Monday’s questioning and Raja Salameh remains in custody.
Banks in Lebanon have been the target of a series of judicial orders by Judge Aoun, leading to the freezing of assets and travel bans, Fransabank closing all its branches, and the banking sector staging a two-day strike on Monday and Tuesday in protest.
Many political analysts are saying that the rush with this series of actions against Lebanon’s banking sector might be a way to a ensure certain political agenda leading to the upcoming elections on May 15, 2022.