CAIRO: After succeeding in reducing his court fine from 100 million EGP ($14 million) to 10 million EGP in the “Steel Monopoly Case,” business tycoon Ahmed Ezz has been released on bail and is now requesting the government return 45 million EGP, the remainder of the 55 million EGP fine installment he initially paid.
“Over the past year, Ezz paid five installments, each of 11 million EGP,” his defense lawyer Hazem Zarkana told Youm7 Monday, adding that he was going to submit the request to the Economic Misdemeanor Court, which previously ordered Ezz to pay the initial sum in 2013 under a court headed by Judge Khaled Radwan.
Ezz, who was arrested in February 2011 following the eruption of the January 25 Revolution that toppled Hosni Mubarak, has close ties to the former president’s family, and was an important political figure during his regime. He served as the secretary-general of the dissolved National Democratic Party (NDP), which was controlled by Mubarak’s son Gamal and his associates.
On trial in several cases, in March 2013 the Cairo Criminal Court sentenced Ezz to 37 years in prison in the case publicly known as the “Dekheila shares,” in which Ezz, along with six other defendants, was charged with illicit gains and wasting public funds estimated at 5 billion EGP as a result of corruption and the illegal seizure of EZDK steel company shares.
The verdict was later annulled by the Court of Cassation in December 2013, and a retrial began in April 2014. In July, Ezz was released pending trial and was a released on a 2 million EGP bail. The Economic Misdemeanor Court previously fined him 100 million EGP in November 2013 for the “Steel Monopoly Case,” which he partly paid until a decision by the Court of Cassation came on Nov. 25 approving the fine reduction.
Additional reporting by Ehab el-Mohandes.