In this Saturday, Jan. 24, 2015 photo, 32-year-old mother Shaimaa el-Sabbagh holds a poster during a protest in downtown Cairo (Photo: AP)
An Egyptian misdemeanour court acquitted Saturday 17 people who were charged with ''illegally protesting" as they took part in the peaceful march 24 January, during which activist Shaimaa El-Sabagh was shot dead.
El-Sabagh was shot while heading — with around two dozen peaceful marchers, mostly members of the Socialist Popular Alliance Party — to Tahrir Square to lay flowers in memory of those who were killed during the 25 January 2011 uprising.
The 17 defendants came forward to testify in investigations of El-Sabagh's killing, but were later charged by the general prosecution.
Fourteen of the defendants belong to the Socialist Popular Alliance Party, like El-Sabagh, while three do not.
The prosecution previously said investigations revealed El-Sabagh died from wounds sustained from "light birdshot" that a Central Security Forces (CSF) officer fired at her and other protesters.
The policeman was charged with “beating that led to death.” He is currently being tried.