Egypt’s local digest Nov. 15: Court overturns death sentence against ex-president Morsi
Former president Mohamed Morsi - YOUM7


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Court overturns death sentences against former president Mohamed Morsi

Egypt’s Court of Cassation on Tuesday overturned sentences of death and life in prison served to former president Mohamed Morsi and other Muslim Brotherhood group leaders over breaking the Wadi Natroun Prison during the 2011 uprising, Youm7 reported.

A total of 129 people were on the trial with only 27 in custody.

In June 2015, a Cairo criminal court upheld death sentences against Morsi and five other senior brotherhood figures, including the group’s Supreme Guide Mohamed Badie over numerous charges including damaging and setting fire to prison buildings, murder, attempted murder and looting prison weapons depots.

The court also has sentenced 21 of the MB defendants to life in prison.

The death sentences were originally issued on May 2014 and sent to the grand mufti for review.


15 Ultras Ahlawy acquitted of rioting

The Qasr el Nil Misdemeanor Court on Tuesday has acquitted 15 Ultras Ahlawy members of charges of inciting riots, chaos, and attempting to break into Al-Ahly SC headquarters, Youm7 reported.

The court decision is based on a report submitted by board of directors of Al Ahly sports club, which denies the involvement of the 15 fans in the said charges.

The fans were detained after Al-Ahly SC headquarters was stormed amid demands to attend a handball match against Al Jazeerah SC in September and Al-Ahly. The match had been scheduled to be played without fans or spectators in the stands.


Switzerland to return stolen ancient stele to Egypt

Switzerland will return to Egypt an ancient stele (upright stone slab bearing a commemorative inscription,) which was stolen from a temple 30 years ago, AFP said Tuesday, citing Geneva’s public prosecutor statement.

The artifact was stolen from an ancient Egyptian temple located in Behbeit El Hagar archaeological site, 8 kilometers west of Egypt’s Delta governorate of Mansoura. It will shortly be handed over to Egyptian authorities.

“During an inventory control in the Geneva free economic zone at the end of 2014, the federal customs identified… a granite engraving of unknown origin and alerted Geneva police, who opened a criminal case,” the public prosecutor said.

Investigators compared photographs taken by French archeologist Christine Favard Meeks at the site in the 1970s to more recent ones which “established without any doubt that the granite engraving was stolen from” Behbeit El Hagar.

Egypt’s political turmoil has led to a security lapse at archaeological sites and storerooms and museums nationwide, leaving Egypt’s treasures vulnerable to looting. The Egyptian museum and Malawi museum are among the sites that have been affected.

During the past four years, Egypt has recovered over 1,600 artifacts and is currently working on other cases in many European countries, Ministry of Antiquities Museums Sector former head Ahmed Sharaf previously told The Cairo Post.

“It is impossible to provide an accurate number of the artifacts that have been stolen since the January 25 Revolution,” he added.


Lawsuit filed against MP over leaking NGO bill to foreign embassies

Lawyer Samir Sabry filed a lawsuit with the Egypt’s Attorney General demanding the lifting of immunity from MP Mohamed Anwar al Sadat over accusations of leaking the government-drafted NGO law to a number of foreign embassies in Cairo, Youm7 reported.

Sabry also called for launching investigations with Sadat over “encouraging the west to interfere in Egypt’s affairs.”

The move came after Social Solidarity Minister Ghada Wali filed the complaint against El-Sadat to parliament speaker Ali Abdel-Al on Saturday accusing him of “exploiting his position” to leak the NGO draft law to a number of foreign embassies during the first legislative season (January-September 2016.)

On Sunday, the general committee at Egypt’s House of Representatives referred MP Mohamed Anwar el Sadatto investigations before a parliament panel over the said accusations.

If he was found guilty, the MP will be referred to the ethics committee. The lawmaker has resigned as chairman of the committee in August.


Court upholds release of Mubarak’s sons in “presidential palaces” case

The Cairo Court of Cassation on Tuesday rejected an appeal presented by public prosecution against earlier court ruling to release from prison the sons of the country’s former president Hosni Mubarak, Youm7 reported.

In October 2015, the Cairo criminal court ordered the release of Mubarak’s sons Gamal and Alaa after they were both sentenced in May to four years in prison in a corruption case known in media as the presidential palaces.

The release was based on that the two sons have already served the jail term as they began their pre-trial detention in April 2011.

In May 2014, the two sons along with Mubarak and other four defendants were convicted of embezzling 125 million EGP originally allocated for developing communications centers at the presidency, in order to establish and develop their private properties.

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