Cairo sentences 25 to 15 years in prison, acquits 12 in Rabaa dispersal case

Ahram Online , Thursday 12 May 2022

A Cairo criminal court has sentenced 25 people to 15 years in prison, one juvenile to five years, and acquitted 12 others in a retrial of the case known in media as “the dispersal of the Rabaa sit-in case.”

A file photo for defendants in a court session. Al-Ahram
A file photo for defendants in a court session. Al-Ahram

The rulings are not final and can be appealed.

The defendants were charged with several crimes that took place in August 2013, including the premeditated murder of civilians as well as policemen who were tasked with dispersing a sit-in in Cairo’s Rabaa square, which has been renamed Hisham Barakat Square.
The defendants were also charged with attempted murder, blocking roads, destroying public property, and possessing firearms and Molotov cocktails.
The case, which involves more than 700 defendants including fugitives, dates back to the dispersal of the Rabaa sit-in that was held by supporters of ousted Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in August 2013.
The dispersal left hundreds dead and thousands arrested on a variety of charges. It also unleashed days of nationwide street clashes and attacks on security installations.
In June last year, Egypt’s Court of Cassation upheld the death penalty for 12 people in the case, Mohamed El-Beltagy, Safwat Hegazy, and Abdel-Rahman El-Bar, three key leading members of the terrorist-designated Muslim Brotherhood.
The country's top appeals court also commuted in June the death penalty for 31 others in the same case to life imprisonment, but upheld prison sentences ranging from five to 25 years for 277 others.
The cassation court also upheld a 10-year prison sentence against Osama, the son of ousted President Morsi.
Criminal proceedings against another key Brotherhood figure, Essam El-Erian, were abated after his death in custody in August 2020. El-Erian had received a final death penalty in the case. 
In 2018, a Cairo Criminal Court issued preliminary death sentences for 75 members of the Brotherhood in a mass trial in the case. Several defendants, including Mohamed Badie, the Brotherhood’s Supreme Guide, were handed life imprisonment sentences in the case.

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