REYKJAVIK - Iceland began the trial on Monday of former prime minister Geir Haarde for failing to prevent a 2008 financial crash, thought to be the only prosecution in the world of a political leader over the crisis.
Iceland's top three banks all collapsed in late 2008 after years of debt-fueled expansion. The country of just 320,000 people was forced to borrow around $10 billion from the International Monetary Fund and other lenders.
Parliament voted in 2010 to prosecute Haarde over the crisis at a special court of impeachment set up in 1905, which has never been used before. He has denied the charges.