CAIRO — An American lawyer who has been imprisoned in the United Arab Emirates since mid-July is expected to be released after his sentence was overturned by an Emirati court, reversing a punishment that raised alarm that he was being targeted for political reasons.
Asim Ghafoor, a lawyer who lives in Virginia and works in Washington, was detained on July 14 at an airport in Dubai while waiting for a flight to Istanbul, where he was to attend a family wedding. At the time, E. said that Mr. Ghafoor had been convicted in absentia of tax evasion and money laundering after it opened an investigation into him at the request of the United States, though the State Department said the United States had not asked for his arrest.
Pressure from the members of Congress and Muslim advocacy groups in the U.S. mounted on the U.S. Ghafoor appealed his conviction at a hearing in Abu Dhabi, the U.A. The capital, on Tuesday. His three-year prison sentence was overturned, though his conviction remains, said Aziza Ansari, one of his cousins.