Egypt court sentences journalist to 1 year in prison, fines editor of Ahram Arabic website

Ahram Online , Sunday 31 Jul 2016

The court's decision stems from a complaint by Egypt's former justice minister El-Zend against an investigative journalist and the editor of Ahram Arabic news website for publishing a report on his 'financial corruption'

Ahmed El-Zend
Egypt's former Justice Minister Ahmed El Zend (Photo:Reuters)

An Egypt court has sentenced in absentia Ahram journalist Ahmed Amer to one year in prison and fined the editor-in-chief of the Ahram Arabic website, Hisham Younis, EGP 10,000 on charges of "spreading false news."

The charges against Amer and Younis stem from a 2015 complaint filed by former justice minister Ahmed El-Zend following an investigative report published by Ahram Arabic website.

The report claimed that El-Zend engaged in corrupt financial practices during his tenure as head of the Judges Club, overseeing the selling of land belonging to the club at below market prices to a relative of his wife.

Younis confirmed to Ahram Online that he plans to appeal verdict.

El-Zend had occupied the position of head of the Judges Club  from 2009 until 2015, an unofficial but powerful institution, of which 90 percent of judges are members.

In May 2015, El-Zend was appointed justice minister. He was sacked after spending less than a year in office for making public statements that were interpreted as an insult to the Prophet Muhammad.

According to a 2015 report by Reporters Without Borders, Egypt is the second highest jailer of journalists in the world, following China. 

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