Egyp­tian court con­firms 28 death sen­tences

CityPress - - News -

A Cairo crim­i­nal court yes­ter­day sen­tenced 28 peo­ple to death over the killing of Egypt’s top pros­e­cu­tor in 2015 and handed 15 oth­ers prison sen­tences of 25 years each.

The court also handed down sen­tences rang­ing from 10 years to life in prison to 38 co-de­fen­dants in the same case. Six­teen of the ac­cused were tried in ab­sen­tia.

The court had in June rec­om­mended pass­ing the death penalty to Egypt’s top re­li­gious au­thor­ity, the Grand Mufti, who can ap­prove or re­ject the rec­om­men­da­tion.

The sen­tences, con­firmed by the court in yes­ter­day’s hear­ing af­ter the Grand Mufti’s ap­proval, can be ap­pealed.

Pub­lic pros­e­cu­tor Hisham Barakat was killed in a car bomb at­tack in his con­voy in Cairo, an op­er­a­tion for which Egypt blamed the Mus­lim Brother­hood and Gaza-based Ha­mas. Both groups have de­nied it.

Barakat was the most se­nior Egyp­tian fig­ure to die in a spate of at­tacks that hit the coun­try fol­low­ing the mil­i­tary’s top­pling in 2013 of demo­crat­i­cally elected Pres­i­dent Mohammed Morsi, who hails from the now-out­lawed Mus­lim Brother­hood.

The de­fen­dants were also charged with pos­sess­ing ex­plo­sives and con­spir­ing with the Pales­tinian Ha­mas move­ment to carry out at­tacks in Egypt.

The death sen­tences are sub­ject to an au­to­matic ap­peal. Other ver­dicts can also be ap­pealed by both the de­fence and pros­e­cu­tion.

Last month, the court handed pre­lim­i­nary death sen­tences to 30 de­fen­dants in the case.

– Daily Sabah Mideast

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