Algeria TV boss convicted for sexual harassment

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Algiers -

An Algiers court on Sunday handed down a six-month suspended jail sentence and fined a 76-year-old head of a state television station accused of sexually harassing three women journalists.

Said Lamarni, who has been dismissed as director general of the Berber TV4 channel, was ordered to pay a 200 000-dinar (2 000-euro) fine, said an AFP reporter at the court.

The prosecution had urged the court to jail Lamarni for one year in a case that sparked outrage in Algeria, where critics say verdicts in cases of sexual harassment are not implemented.

Dozens of people, especially human rights activists, were present in court in support of the journalists who broke out in tears when the verdict was read.

Lamarni, who was not present for the verdict, has denied any wrongdoing.

Defence attorney Meslem Mounia hailed the verdict as the “first of its kind in Algeria.”

“The verdict renders justice to women who are victims of harassment,” Mounia said. “Now harassment is no longer a taboo and victims can go to court and seek justice.” - Sapa-AFP


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