Anis Rahmani: Head of a major Algerian media group jailed

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Protester in Algiers 22 March
Protesters forced Algeria's president to resign and subsequently many of his friends were jailed

The head of a major Algerian media group has been jailed for five years.

Anis Rahmani was close to the president who was forced from power after mass protests in 2019.

He is the latest in a series of powerful figures in the ousted president's entourage to have been given prison sentences.

He was accused of recording and broadcasting a phone conversation with a senior intelligence officer without his consent.

Rahmani, whose real name is Mohamed Mokaddem, admitted to recording the conversation but denied any criminal wrongdoing, reports AFP news agency.

The charges Rahmani faced included "defamation of the army".

The head of Ennahar TV, which calls itself the first news channel in Algeria, will be joining many associates of the former president in jail.

In 2019, Abdelaziz Bouteflika was forced to resign as president by mass protests against him after he announced he intended to stand for office for a fifth term.

Subsequently, an investigation into corruption during Mr Bouteflika's time in office led to a string of his associates being jailed.

Ex-ministers, a former police chief and the rumoured secret child of Mr Bouteflika have all been jailed.