At least five members of Cameroonian President Paul Biya’s security team have received suspended sentences following their arrest on Tuesday in Geneva for assaulting a journalist.
The Swiss newspaper Tribune Geneva reports that the five men appeared in court on Wednesday and that a sixth member of the team, a woman, was released while holding a diplomatic passport.
According to a statement by the regional government, a journalist from Radio Television Suisse (RTS) filed a criminal complaint against them, accusing them of assaulting him outside a hotel while he was covering a protest against the Cameroonian president last week.
The document states that the journalist was slightly injured and his equipment damaged. The Geneva-based RTS stated that the men had been sentenced for “coercion, property damag, and misappropriation”.
The station added that the men were given suspended sentences of at least three months. They were immediately released.
President Paul Biya has been in power for more than 36 years and has won a new seven-year term in 2018. He is often criticized by some for his style of governance and his travels abroad. According to a report of investigative journalists, he spent nearly 60 days abroad in 2017 for private visits.