Actors Syndicate urges public against jumping to conclusions pending results in Menna Shalaby inquiry

Ahram Online , Saturday 26 Nov 2022

Egypt's Actors Syndicate has urged the media and public against jumping to conclusions before the prosecution’s ongoing investigation into well-known actress Menna Shalaby for allegedly possessing controlled narcotics is completed, calling for respect for her privacy.

Menna Shalaby
Menna Shalaby


In a statement on Friday, the syndicate said "it expresses its regret for the reports that slander syndicate member Menna Shalaby which prejudge the results of the investigations of the Public Prosecution and represents a breach of all the rights guaranteed by law to any person standing before the judiciary."

The syndicate also lamented that Shalaby’s official documents were posted on social media, urging news outlets and the public to respect the privacy of its members and wait for the official results of prosecution's investigations.

Menna Shalaby, 40, who is one of the best known Egyptian actresses of her generation, grabbed headlines on Friday after the Public Prosecution released a statement saying the actress was stopped at Cairo International Airport by customs authorities who found "substances suspected to be narcotic drugs" in her luggage.

She was later released on EGP 50,000 bail pending investigation.

A picture of the actress' passport showing her personal information were widely circulated alongside another picture reportedly showing the suspected narcotics after being confiscated by the authorities.

The syndicate said it "fully appreciates the investigation authorities and the Egyptian judiciary, and respects all its decisions.”

Shalaby was returning from the US when the suspected narcotics were found by the Egyptian customs authorities in her luggage, the prosecution said, without specifying the type seized.

The prosecution said it interrogated the actress after it received a report from the General Department for Narcotics Control that indicated that the she had "obtained the substances with the intention of using them."

The actress denied the charges, added the prosecution.

The prosecution ordered the substances found in her possession be sent for the Forensic Medicine Authority to examine whether they contain any narcotic substances, according to the statement.

In 2021, Shalaby was the first-ever Egyptian actor to receive an Emmy International nomination for her performance in the crime mini-series Every Week Has a Friday

Shalaby made her debut on TV two decades ago in the series Morning and Evening Talk in 2001, which is based on a story by Nobel laureate Naguib Mahfouz.

She made her silver screen debut in 2001 with a role in the late Radwan Al-Kashef’s The Magician.

Since then, Shalaby has worked with many renowned Egyptian directors and stars.

Among Shalaby's most significant appearances was in the film Nawara directed by Hala Khalil, which brought her a record of 10 best actress awards.

Shalaby described her role in Nawara as the role of her lifetime and one of the most important artistic endeavours in her career.

For her score of achievements, Shalaby was honoured with the Faten Hamama Excellence Award at the last 41st Cairo International Film Festival (CIFF) in 2019.

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