Iraqi court sentences Sunni VP to death for 2nd time over alleged assassination plot

The Associated Press

BAGHDAD - An Iraqi court has convicted the country's Sunni vice-president on charges of instigating bodyguards to assassinate a senior government official and sentenced him to death.

Thursday's verdict was the second death sentence for Tariq al-Hashemi in less than two months, both delivered in absentia since he is in exile in Turkey. Al-Hashemi fled Iraq in December 2011, when the Shiite led-government accused him of playing a role in numerous attacks

He has denied the charges.

The criminal court in Baghdad also sentenced al-Hashemi's son-in-law to death on the same charges.

Supreme Judicial Council spokesman Abdul-Sattar Bayrkdar says the two suspects instigated bodyguards to kill an official by sticking a bomb to his car.

Al-Hashemi's attorney Muayad Obeid al-Ezzi says he was not informed about the hearing or verdict.