BEIRUT: State Prosecutor Ghassan Oueidat took disciplinary action against Mount Lebanon Prosecutor Ghada Aoun Wednesday, urging security institutions not to refer cases to her anymore.
Oueidat’s decision was due to Aoun “overstepping the prerogatives of the state prosecutor” by referring the charges she brought against former premier Najib Mikati to Beirut’s investigative judge, a judicial source told The Daily Star.
Last week, Aoun brought charges against Mikati, his son Maher, his nephew Azmi and Bank Audi for "illegitimate gains” from subsidized housing loans, which are usually taken by people who cannot afford to pay for houses. Mikati denied the accusations, saying the charges were “a [political] message.”
According to the source, Aoun should have sent the case to the state prosecutor, who would then send it to the Beirut prosecutor.
The Beirut prosecutor then decides whether to bring charges against the defendants then sends the case to the Beirut investigative judge.
The source also said Aoun did not have a case against Mikati. The case was initially filed by Mikati against journalist Salem Zahran, accusing him of libel and fabrications that Mikati had taken subsidized housing loans and put them in his account at Bank Audi.
Current and future cases handled by Aoun will now be referred to a deputy Mount Lebanon prosecutor or directly to the state prosecutor, the source added.