Argentina court confirms sentence of former President Menem

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Argentina's top criminal court has confirmed a prison sentence against former President Carlos Menem.

Friday's ruling ratifies a 2015 sentence of 4 1/2 years for embezzlement.

It also confirmed a sentence of 3 1/2 years against former Economy Minister Domingo Cavallo for his role in illegal payments to staffers that were authorized by Menem during his 1989-1999 presidency.

Menem is currently a senator and that status as a lawmaker protects him from being arrested.

Menem says he's a victim of political percussion. Cavallo also denies any wrongdoing.

Both Menem and Cavallo are expected to appeal to the Supreme Court.

Lawmakers would have to vote on whether they take away Menem's immunity from arrest if the decision is ratified by the Supreme Court.