‘Wrong defendant’ in lawyer shooting case: Eyewitness
Lawyer Mohamed el-Gamal with Lawyers Syndicate head Sameh Ashour - Photo courtesy of Lawyer Mohamed el-Gamal Facebook page

CAIRO: A policeman acknowledged he shot lawyer Mohamed el-Gamal after he heard people screaming “catch this defendant” in a Cairo Court Saturday.

Magdy Ahmed, the policeman was arrested, investigated and ordered released on bail “on the basis he was doing his duty,” eyewitness El-Shazly Hanafy told The Cairo Post Wednesday. Investigations into Gamal’s shooting are still ongoing, and the prosecution has already appealed his release.

Hanafy, however, denied that Ahmed is the perpetrator, saying “a prosecution secretary is the shooter.”

Hanafy and another lawyer, Ahmed Qotb, are the two eyewitnesses in the shooting incident. Qotb has previously come forward with similar testimonies, accusing prosecution secretary Ahmed Ezz “who physically and verbally assaulted” both Qotb and Gamal before the shooting.

According to both accounts, which appear to be the same, an altercation occurred between Ezz and Gamal, who was reporting a security guard for abusing Qotb’s client.

Gamal reportedly left the place running, and Ezz ran after him yelling “catch this defendant,” according to Hanafy. The policeman opened fire but the bullet missed Gamal; Ezz then snatched the gun from the policeman and injured Gamal and another security guard.

“Gamal did not see who shot him” Hanafy continued. “The whole problem was between El-Gamal and the prosecution secretary, the policeman has nothing to do with it.”

Reportedly recovered after a serious injury, Gamal slammed policeman’s release in TV show statements, criticizing “repeated assaults” by the police against lawyers.

Hanafy said he provided his testimonies to Prosecutor Ahmed Shora, whose task was taken over by a judge to ensure neutrality, as the Lawyers’ Syndicate said the prosecution should not investigate a case to which it is a party.

A member of syndicate’s board, Sameh Sedeeq, attended preliminary investigations and quoted Shora as saying he was “not convinced” that the weapon was snatched from the policeman.

“I was surprised by the policeman’s confession,” said Hanafy, claiming that policeman might have been coerced into the confession “in an attempt to exclude the prosecution from the case, so the case ends as a policeman’s mistake.”

Policeman testimonies ‘do not match’ evidence

Hanafy said that policeman Ahmed’s confession “does not correspond” with what happened.

“Magdy said he shot two bullets, although three bullets were shot in the incident,” Hanafy said.

Another testimony by Magdy said that Gamal was handcuffed at the time of shooting “although he was not,” continued Hanafy. He added that Magdy provided the wrong floor number where the incident occurred.

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