Gulnara Karimova, Daughter of Former Uzbek President, Sentenced to Prison

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TASHKENT – A court in Uzbekistan has ordered Gulnara Karimova, daughter of the former Uzbek president Islam Karimov, to serve the remainder of a criminal sentence in prison for having allegedly violated the terms of her house arrest, the prosecutor general’s office said.

This morning, prosecutors said that Karimova was being sent to prison for having “systematically violated the obligations” related to a previous five-year sentence on charges of embezzlement and extortion. Those terms included not leaving her home and not using the internet or phones, Reuters reported.

Her Swiss lawyer Gregoire Mangeat wrote on Twitter that she was “forcibly removed” from the apartment where she lived in the Uzbek capital of Tashkent on March 5. The authorities said she was taken to a prison.

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“She was taken to an unknown place. The Uzbek authorities continue to exert psychological and physical pressure on her to force her to withdraw her appeals and abandon all her rights and property in Switzerland,” Mangeat wrote.

Uzbek authorities have been seeking to freeze Karimova’s assets, including in Switzerland, Britain, France and a string of other countries.

Karimova disappeared from public view in 2014. The first official word of her fate was in 2017, when the prosecutor general’s office said she had been convicted and sentenced in 2015 to five years probation, the equivalent of house arrest in Uzbekistan, for acquiring stakes in a number of companies through extortion or embezzlement, and for tax evasion. The prosecutors said at the time she was still under investigation for other crimes.

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