TV host Ahmed Moussa receives suspended jail term for airing private call by ElBaradei

Ahram Online , Wednesday 5 Apr 2017

Ahmed Moussa
Egyptian TV host Ahmed Moussa (Photo:Ahram Arabic website)

A Cairo misdemeanour court sentenced on Wednesday TV host Ahmed Moussa to a six-month suspended prison term for illegally airing on his TV show a private phone call between former Egyptian vice president Mohamed ElBaradei and former army Chief of Staff Sami Anan.

The famous TV host was found guilty of wiretapping and playing on the air illegally obtained recordings of phone calls.

In late December and early January, Moussa played on his TV show a series of phone calls recorded between 2011 and 2013 of ElBaradei and a number of political figures and activists.

Among the recordings was a March 2011conversation between ElBaradei and then-Chief of Staff Anan, where ElBaradei can be heard negotiating on behalf of protesters who were calling for the resignation of the cabinet of then-prime minister Ahmed Shafiq, Mubarak’s last appointed prime minister.

Moussa played the phone calls on the air after it was announced that ElBaradei would be doing his first TV interview since his resignation as vice president in 2013.

In late December, lawyer Hamido Gamil filed a lawsuit against Moussa in front of the misdemeanour court, accusing the TV host of illegally broadcasting the phone recordings.

Gamil also accused Moussa of violation of privacy and jeopardising Egyptian national security.

Moussa can still appeal the court's sentence.

Moussa, a stalwart anti-revolutionary voice, has previously played on the air private phone conversations by Egyptian activists and revolutionary figures.

The host has also repeatedly slammed activists associated with the 2011 uprising, and has faced received lawsuits for publically insulting a number of revolutionary figures.

Moussa is currently in the United States to cover President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi’s visit to Washington. 

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