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Monday, 10 August 2020

Egypt's Court of Cassation postpones appeal of Mubarak strongman Safwat El-Sherif

El-Sayed Gamal El-Din , Tuesday 7 Jul 2020
File photo: Former Senior official of Mubarak’s ruling National Democratic Party, NDP, Safwat el-She
File photo: Former Senior official of Mubarak’s ruling National Democratic Party, NDP, Safwat el-Sherif (Al-Ahram)
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Egypt's Court of Cassation on Tuesday postponed the hearing of an appeal against a 3-year-jail term by Mubarak-era politician Safwat El-Sherif for an illicit gains conviction until 15 September.

The country's top appeals court ordered El-Sherif remain in detention.

In September 2018, a Cairo criminal court sentenced El-Sherif to three years in prison and an EGP 99 million (approx. $5.5 million) fine in a retrial on the charges of illicit gains. His sons were acquitted in the same ruling.

El-Sherif and one of his sons were given five-year terms and a EGP 209 million fine (approx. $11.7 million) in May 2016 on charges of corruption and illicit gains. His second son was given a ten-year jail term in absentia.

In December 2016 the Court of Cassation accepted their appeal and ordered a retrial.

The Court of Cassation will itself conduct a second retrial to uphold the court’s decision or accept the appeal and give a final verdict not subject to more appeals.

El-Sherif held various public posts under president Hosni Mubarak, including head of Egypt's State Information body, the head of the Egyptian Radio and Television Union, information minister, and the speaker of Egypt's upper house of parliament, which was abolished in 2011 and will be re-established this year.

In 2012, a court also acquitted El-Sherif and other high-level Mubarak associates of organising the so-called "Battle of the Camel," a deadly mob attack against anti-regime protesters during the uprising in 2011.

Many Mubarak-era figures have been pushing to reach settlements in corruption cases with the Egyptian government, including late business tycoon Hussein Salem in 2016 and steel mogul Ahmed Ezz earlier this year. 

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