Rome prosecutors are ready to charge four members of Egypt's security apparatus who were allegedly involved in the murder of Italian student Giulio Regeni in Cairo in 2016.
According to a statement published on the Italian news agency ANSA, the Italian prosecutors said they have completed their probe into Regeni’s case and hence they are ready to file charges against “four out of five” Egyptian security members over their suspected role in the case. The fifth suspect will not be charged due to insufficient evidence.
Under Italian law, suspects can be tried in absentia.
Regeni, 28, a PhD student at Cambridge University in the UK affiliated with the American University in Cairo, was in Egypt to research trade unions and labour movements. He was reported missing on the fifth anniversary of the 25 January Revolution. Days later, his mutilated and half-naked body was found on 3 February 2016 on the Cairo-Alexandria desert road.
The Italian statement added that the possible charges are “multi-aggravated abduction of a person, complicity in aggravated murder, and complicity in grievous bodily harm.”
The statement said that the findings of the probe were communicated to Italian-appointed lawyers, as the Egyptian suspects have not yet stood as possible suspects in the case.
Both the Italian lawyers and their clients now have 20 days to present evidence for their defence and eventual requests to be interviewed by investigators, the statement noted.
Since the death of Regeni, the Egyptian prosecution has been conducting an investigation into the case for years while cooperating with its Italian counterpart, but has recently stated that so far the perpetrators have not been identified.
Egypt’s and Italy’s prosecutions have published a joint statement on 30 November to give their final findings on the case. Egypt's public prosecution said the perpetrator of the murder of the Italian student “is still unknown,” and it accordingly “will temporarily close its investigation,” while instructing investigative authorities to continue taking all necessary measures to reach the perpetrator of the crime.
However, Rome’s prosecutors have suspected the involvement of the five individuals — all of whom belong to Egyptian security apparatuses — but no connections have been made between their actions and any Egyptian governmental bodies or entities.
Although the Egyptian prosecution said in November’s statement that it understands the independent decisions taken by the Italian prosecution, it has expressed its reservation about Italy’s suspicions, which it said are "not based on solid evidence.”