Ex-Intelligence officer Abu Ragheef under detention amid accusations of inhumane tactics, corruption

The former deputy of the intelligence agency, Ahmed “Abu Ragheef,” has been held in custody following an explicit directive from Interior Minister Abdul-Amir al-Shammari, a source revealed on Sunday.
A source said that the arrest was instigated to probe Abu Ragheef’s involvement in multiple undisclosed cases.
A judicious source recounted that the Karkh investigation court in Baghdad had previously imposed a travel ban on Abu Ragheef, granting him a legal period to validate the legitimacy of his financial sources.
In August 2020, former Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi established a high-level investigative committee to scrutinize major corruption cases and criminal offenses. Chaired by Deputy Interior Minister Ahmed Abu Ragheef, the committee wielded extensive authority, leading to the arrest of high-ranking officials and prominent politicians on corruption-related charges. However, the committee’s work raised multiple waves of controversy.
On December 22, 2022, Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani mandated that any entity employing torture and forcibly extracting confessions be held accountable. This marked the first government response to the disconcerting revelations published by the Washington Post on December 21, 2022, which accused Abu Ragheef’s committee of perpetrating “isolation, torture, and sexual violence” against Iraqi officials and businesspeople.
The Washington Post’s nine-month investigation disclosed that the previous Iraqi government, led by Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi, employed morally reprehensible tactics, including sexual violations, to extract confessions from senior officials and businesspersons during its anti-corruption campaign.
The investigative report, which drew from interviews with over 20 individuals—including five men detained by the committee, nine relatives of detainees, and 11 Iraqi and Western officials who monitored the committee’s work—unveiled a disheartening reality. The campaign was marred by abuse and humiliation, prioritizing the acquisition of pre-written confessions over genuinely addressing corruption.

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