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Cairo: A Kuwaiti appeals court had confirmed a 10-year imprisonment sentence earlier passed in absentia against a senior municipal official in a high-profile trial dubbed in the media as the sand-theft case.

The court had rejected an appeal from the municipality director against the earlier verdict after he turned himself in and ordered his dismissal from the post, Al Qabas newspaper reported.

The official, whose name was not given, was charged with forging official documents and encroaching on a land area of 282,000 square metres.

Last November, the court confirmed a seven-year term against a Syrian national and ordered him along with the municipal official to pay a total fine of KD1.1 billion, the biggest in the history of the Kuwaiti judiciary, local media reported at the time.

Two co-defendants were handed down 10 years and four years in prison respectively, while the court acquitted a foreign woman accused in the same case.

The defendants were charged with facilitating the seizure of KD370 million worth of public money, forging a licence for a company and illegally selling state-owned sand to others.