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Egypt's former antiquities minister Hawass faces fresh corruption charges

Hawass is back in court on charges of smuggling artefacts outside of Egypt

Ahram Online, Tuesday 11 Nov 2014
Zahi Hawass
Zahi Hawass, Egypt's former top antiquities official (Photo: AP)
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World-renowned Egyptologist and former antiquities minister Zahi Hawass was referred to the general prosecution Tuesday on fresh charges of corruption and squandering public funds accusations.

Hawass is accused of being involved in stealing artefacts belonging to Egyptian pharaoh King Khufu, after which the largest Giza pyramid is named.

Six Egyptian employees and three German researchers have been sentenced to five years in prison with labour for seizing the artefacts from the pyramid and smuggling them abroad.

According to the verdict, the Germans, who were sentenced in absentia, had access to the artefacts in field work while trying to prove the largest pyramid wasn't actually built on the Khufu era.

This is not the first time such accusations have been levelled at Hawass, although past investigations have cleared him of charges.

Hawass gained prominence in international media throughout his career, appearing in several documentaries and television series, including Chasing Mummies: The Amazing Adventures of Zahi Hawass, which was aired on the History Chanel in 2010.

Awarded a doctorate in Egyptology from the University of Pennsylvania in 1987, Hawass is the author and co-author of several books, his latest being Ancient African Kingdoms on the Nile: Nubia, released in 2012. He was profiled as one the world's 100 most influential people by Time magazine in 2006.

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Dr Lynda
13-12-2014 01:56pm
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Innocent until proven guilty
Perhaps the reason that he is consistently cleared of charges is because there is no proof of guilt. There is a great deal of envy and wild accusations that have not been substantiated in court. There is a huge difference between hubris and corruption. We all owe him a great deal of gratitude for his tireless work on behalf of restoring the monuments and having been the driving force behind establishing so many new and wonderful museums and sites in Egypt.
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Falls
13-11-2014 07:34am
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hawass
where is smoke there is fire. but i think the egyptian government keeps clearing him because he can be controlled and be told what to do and say. no one worth their salt can routinely state with so much conviction as hawass does whenever he says that khufu built the pyramid attributed to him. when khufu's own stele clearly states that the pyramid was old during his reign. hooray for dead languages, ignorance and out-right denials. but then science currently doesn't want new interpretations of old strongly held beliefs. mustn't upset the apple cart that sits precariously on the pinnacle of new discoveries.
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expat
11-11-2014 10:35pm
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what to do...
the guy represents a real problem... you want to achieve anything in egypt? you obviously make a whole lot of snake people unhappy/upset,choose your own term... and they bite back,even if they were your former assistants..so much for the world known loyality of ANY egyptian sure,i am hundret percent sure,the guy took his part of the loot,as every egyptian in power does... but what you expect from a total corrupted country after islamic/turkish/french/british etc rule...which always just swept up the rubbish in its assistance at that time,never honoured the honest people? do you think,1000 years go by by no damage to the whole system?
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Allen
11-11-2014 08:52pm
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Hawass was so arrogant and controlling.
He probably felt it was his property to have, and keep.
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