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Egyptian court overturns steel tycoon Ahmed Ezz's 37-year sentence

Steel tycoon will face retrial on charges of profiteering and squandering public funds

Elsayed Gamal Eldeen, Saturday 14 Dec 2013
Ahmed Ezz
File photo: Ahmed Ezz, a senior leader in former President Hosni Mubarak's party and chairman of Ezz Steel, arrives in a police vehicle outside the court in north Cairo February 23, 2011. (Photo: Reuters)
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Views: 2773

The Egyptian Court of Cassation overturned on Saturday the 37-year prison sentence given to business tycoon Ahmed Ezz in March on charges of profiteering and squandering public funds, ordering a retrial.

The court verdict came in response to an appeal by Ezz and six former state officials who was also convicted in the case, which related to Ezz's acquisition of El-Dekheila steel plant.

Ezz Steel has a 55 percent stake in Ezz Dekheila, the largest steel producer in the Middle East. It was previously known as Alexandria National Iron and Steel Company (ANISC) before Ezz, then a mid-rank steel manufacturer, was called in to bail-out the struggling publicly-owned company in 1999.

Ezz, who remains in detention, is to be retried on other corruption charges, including money laundering, illegally procuring steel licenses, and receiving unmerited benefits from Egypt’s Industrial Modernisation Centre.

Overall, Ezz has received cumulative sentences of 60 years in prison, but his appeals have been accepted in many of those cases and he is to face a number of retrials.  



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