For­mer pres­i­dent Morsi gets 25 years in prison

7 Days in Dubai - - FRONT PAGE -

An Egyp­tian court has sen­tenced six peo­ple to death, in­clud­ing two Al Jazeera em­ploy­ees, for al­legedly pass­ing doc­u­ments re­lated to na­tional se­cu­rity to Qatar and the Doha-based TV net­work dur­ing the rule of ex­trem­ist Pres­i­dent Mo­hammed Morsi.

Morsi, the case’s top de­fen­dant, and two of his aides were also sen­tenced to 25 years in prison. Morsi and his sec­re­tary, Amin El Si­rafy, each re­ceived an ad­di­tional 15-year sen­tence for a lesser crime. El Si­rafy’s daugh­ter, Karima, was also sen­tenced to 15 years in prison.

Morsi, Egypt’s first freely elected leader, was ousted by the mil­i­tary in July 2013 and has al­ready been sen­tenced to death in an­other case. That death sen­tence and an­other two oth­ers - life and 20 years in prison - are un­der ap­peal.

All of yes­ter­day’s ver­dicts can be ap­pealed. Of the case’s 11 de­fen­dants, seven, in­clud­ing Morsi, are in cus­tody.

Amnesty In­ter­na­tional called for the death sen­tences to be im­me­di­ately thrown out and for the “lu­di­crous charges against the jour­nal­ists to be dropped”.

The two Al Jazeera em­ploy­ees - iden­ti­fied by the judge as news pro­ducer Alaa Omar Mo­hammed and news ed­i­tor Ibrahim Mo­hammed Hi­lal - were sen­tenced to death in ab­sen­tia along with As­maa Al Khateib, who worked for Rasd, a me­dia net­work widely sus­pected of links to Morsi’s Mus­lim Brother­hood.

There was no im­me­di­ate com­ment from Al Jazeera on the ver­dicts.

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