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Security forces raid farm, capture former MP Barrak – Al-Barrak to serve a 2-year jail sentence for ‘insult’

headline1KUWAIT: A state security task force arrested former MP Musallam Al-Barrak in a Kabd area farm during a dinner invitation, security sources said. Al-Barrak will serve a two year jail sentence for a speech deemed insulting to HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah. Barrak's defense lawyer said that the prison administration insisted on placing Barrak in ward 2 (solitary confinement) - though he asked to be placed in ward 1 as a state security prisoner.

Police also arrested ten people, including relatives of Barrak, during the raid on charges of harboring a fugitive and insulting officers. The Interior Ministry had warned in a statement Friday afternoon that harboring a fugitive is punishable by a maximum of two years in jail and/or a fine of KD2,000 according to Article 132 of Kuwait's Penal Code. A police team had raided an Abdali farm owned by Barrak's brother earlier this month after receiving information that the former lawmaker was there.

Kuwait's Cassation Court - the highest court in the country, upheld a two-year jail sentence against the former lawmaker on May 18. The verdict is final and cannot be appealed. "This ruling is without the slightest doubt - very political," Barrak said following the verdict. "I thank God that I am not interested in wealth or power - I will always uphold my dignity both inside and outside the prison," he added. The sentencing is for a speech Barrak gave in October 2012 which is deemed insulting to HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah. Heated opposition to the dissolution of the elected February 2012 parliament; a change in the electoral system and new elections that same year in December fueled the political opposition in Kuwait.

By Meshaal Al-Enezi

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This article was published on 13/06/2015