Mugabe US sanctions buster convicted


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A Chicago man who illegally lobbied for the lifting of sanctions against President Robert Mugabe was yesterday convicted but will be sentenced at a date as yet unannounced. C. Gregory Turner tried to use Chicago legislators to lobby President Barack Obama, a former Illinois Senator, to lift sanctions against Zimbabwe and top officials of the Zimbabwean government without success. Turner and his colleague Prince Asiel Ben Israel wanted to lobby against the lifting of sanctions for a sum of US$3.4 million. The two-week trial was billed to have some fireworks but turned out to be a damp squib with one State Senator from Illinois, Donne Trotter, saying Turner had forged his signature on letters of support sent to Mugabe.  The jury took three days to convict Turner on one of the three counts he was facing. Reports say Turner could be sentenced to as many as 20 years in jail. His colleague Ben Israel pleaded guilty and was sentenced to seven months. Obama who has been in power since 2009 has renewed sanctions against Zimbabwe every year and is reported to have warned Zimbabwe not to go into business with Russia following the signing of a US$3 billion platinum deal.

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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