Cuba seeks 15 years for Frenchman in drugs case

HAVANA—Cuban prosecutors are seeking a 15-year prison term for a French businessman accused of laundering drug money, state television reported late Tuesday.

A verdict in the trial of Jean-Louis Autret is expected “in the coming days,” according to an official communique read aloud on the nightly newscast.

It said the case also involves eight Cubans who face possible sentences of three to seven years on charges of falsification of documents and bribery.

“Declarations by the accused and abundant documentary evidence including some that was provided by French authorities at Cuba’s request, in addition to witness and expert testimony, were considered at the trial,” it added.

The communique said he is being represented by unidentified Cuban legal counsel.

French media reported recently that Autret has been in prison on the island since 2009.

The nature of Autret’s business dealings in Cuba was not immediately clear.

It is the third trial this year of foreign businessmen in cases involving corruption.

Chilean businessmen Max and Marcel Marambio were recently convicted in absentia and given lengthy prison sentences for fraud and falsification of documents.

Cuban President Raul Castro has launched a campaign to crack down on corruption at all levels of society.

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