Acquittal overturned for police charged with killing 37 inmates
Clashes between brotherhood members and security forces - YOUM7/Mahmoud Hefnawy (Archive)

CAIRO: Egypt’s Court of Cassation accepted Thursday an appeal of an acquittal of police officers charged with killing prisoners inside a prisoner transport vehicle Aug. 18, 2013, Youm7 reported.

In March 2014, a court sentenced to 10 years in prison the former Heliopolis police station director deputy Amr Farouk and served one-year imprisonment sentences to three officers charged with manslaughter of the 37.

However, the Khanka Appeal Court of Misdemeanor overturned the sentences.

According to investigations, the police officers threw tear gas bombs inside a prisoner transport vehicle with 45 prisoners inside, killing 37 and injuring others while they were in their way from the Heliopolis police station to Abu Zabaal Prison. On Oct. 22, 2013, the prosecution accused the defendants of manslaughter. The 45 prisoners in the truck were allegedly Muslim Brotherhood supporters, and had been arrested in the aftermath of the Rabaa al-Adaweya dispersal.

One of the injured testified in the first trial that the police officers insisted on placing all 45 prisoners in the vehicle, adding that it was too small to carry that number but the police officers claimed the vehicle could hold around 70 prisoners. The injured prisoner continued that the inmates had difficulty breathing and the temperature was very high, causing them to panic and yell for help, particularly after some began to faint.

The justice experts’ report indicated that the vehicle used to transport the prisoners should not carry more than 24 persons.

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