Sentence of engineer charged in collapse of Alexandria bloc commuted

CAIRO: The sentence of an engineer was reduced Wednesday from 10 to five years in prison in the retrial of a 2007 case, where faulty construction led to the death of 36 people in Alexandria.

The Alexandria criminal court upheld the 10-year prison term of engineer Hossam Mostafa, while engineer Mohamed Abdel Wahab’s sentence was commuted to five years over fraud and restoration without a license.

The engineers and the owner of the apartment bloc, Hanem el-Erian, were sentenced in 2010; Erian was sentenced to 17 years in prison over several charges, including manslaughter, forged licenses, and renovating the ground floor without a license. Erian was retried in 2012, but her sentence was upheld.

All those convicted were private individuals; all officials and government engineers from the authority of Loran district in Alexandria were acquitted. Since the building collapsed in 2007, the families of the victims have said that the unlicensed renovation that ultimately led to the collapse was a result of deep corruption and bribery.

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