CAIRO: Sixteen people, led by a former officer who had been fired, were referred Saturday by the prosecution to a “terrorism-specialized” court after they “were proven to have been in touch” with the Islamic State group (IS,) Youm7 reported.
Most of the defendants are from Minya al-Qamh in Sharqia of Egypt’s Delta. Their first court session is scheduled for Sept. 14 in Sharqia.
The investigations of Homeland Security in Cairo say that the “cluster terrorist cell” had plans to overthrow the regime. Former Officer Helmi Hashim, 63, who is the alleged leader of the cell, is accused of having recruited youth and being close to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, leader of IS.
The whereabouts of Hashim are unknown. He was fired in the mid-80s from the Ministry of Interior as a Lieutenant Colonel after he was reported to have extremist ideology, according to Asharq al-Awsat newspaper reported in October 2014.
Asharq al-Awsat also reports that he is a religious leader at IS and is close to self-proclaimed Caliphate al-Baghdadi, and is also the source of several fatwas on enslavement, beheading, and treating other Muslims as apostates.