19 March 2020
The daughter of Uzbekistan’s late dictator Islam Karimov, was jailed yesterday (18 March 2020) for 13 years after a court found her guilty of heading a crime gang. Uzbekistan’s Supreme Court said on 18 March 2020 that Gulnara Karimova was found guilty of extortion, money laundering, misappropriating the property of others, and financial and other crimes and sentenced her along with five other defendants.
The total value of her corruption was put at more than £1.7 billion.
She fraudulently acquired assets worth £455 million and received £664 million in kickbacks paid into offshore accounts.
Gulnara, a former billionaire, was once believed to be the USSR’s richest woman and was a friend of Queen’s cousin Prince Michael of Kent. During her father’s rule she served as British ambassador. She was Harvard MBA holder, owner of scores of businesses, martial arts black belt, fluent in four languages, professional jewellery designer, poet and performer of a number one hit pop single.
She had been tipped to succeed her late father as president but he suddenly turned on her after hearing the scale of her alleged corruption. He slapped her in the face, after which she was banished from view in the cotton and gas-rich central Asian state.
Last month she wrote to President Shavkat Mirziyoev offering to return $686 million to the country’s treasury in exchange for the dismissal of the court case. Gulnara said the Uzbek government has already confiscated $1.2 billion worth of her assets.
The Uzbek Prosecutor-General’s Office said that the new case against Karimova was linked to her illegal purchase of state-owned shares in two cement plants that she later sold to foreign businessmen. Fcced.com reported.