Mubarak family reserves legal rights against any future 'defamatory reporting:' Son

Tuesday 17 May 2022

The Mubarak family reserves their legal rights against any future "defamatory reporting," son of the late former President Hosni Mubarak, Gamal, said in a video statement broadcast on Tuesday.

Gamal Mubarak delivers a video statement broadcast on Tuesday 17 May, 2022, on the occasion of the conclusion of the international legal proceedings against his family. Still image


The Mubarak family issued the statement on the occasion of the conclusion of the international judicial proceedings against it, saying that it "cannot stay silent anymore in the face of such persistent defamatory reporting" on its members.

"I have asked our lawyers, from now on, to reserve all our rights against any defamatory reporting about my family in that respect," Gamal Mubarak, the younger of the two sons of the former president, said while reading out the family's statement in a Twitter video.

Mubarak's son said he has also instructed the family lawyers to consider all possible legal avenues to pursue damages claims against the EU Council for its conduct towards the family a year after the EU lifted sanctions on assets belonging to a number of Mubarak family members.

He asserted that the EU council broke the law when it imposed unlawful sanctions against the family members, with these sanctions being "solely based on the Egyptian proceedings against myself and my family."

He said in the statement that the family decided after the successful conclusion of its international legal battle that it is time to respond directly.

Many of Mubarak's family members had faced charges, including corruption, illicit gains and money laundering, since the 25 January Revolution in 2011, which ended the 30-year-rule of the former president. However, they have been acquitted of charges.

In July last year, Egypt’s prosecution annulled the asset freeze on Alaa and Gamal, the sons of the former president, after being exonerated on charges of illicit gains.

Mubarak died in February 2020 at the age of 91.

Full exoneration, pursuing damages

The Mubaraks' statement comes a month after Swiss prosecutors dropped an 11-year investigation into alleged money laundering and organised crime linked to persons close to Mubarak, including his two sons.

The office of the Swiss attorney-general said in a statement on 13 April that information received in cooperation with the Egyptian authorities was not enough to endorse the claims linking Mubarak's circles to the case.

It added that the proceedings against five suspects who are members of the Mubarak family will therefore be abandoned, and the assets still under seizure (amounting to 400 million Swiss francs, or EGP 7.8 billion at the current exchange rate) will be released.

"The Federal Prosecutor, after an exhaustive investigation lasting well over 11 years … asserted in his decision that the investigation 'has failed to establish even a tenuous connection to any offence'," Mubarak's statement said.

Gamal Mubarak added that this "significant and historic" decision by the Swiss attorney-general brings to an end all international judicial proceedings involving the Mubarak family.

The Swiss decision came a week after the General Court of the European Union announced it would cancel the EU Council’s 2018, 2019 and 2020 extensions of the decision to freeze the assets of the family.

This included former First Lady Suzanne Mubarak, sons Gamal and Alaa, and their wives Heidy Rasekh and Khadiga El-Gammal.

The court on 6 April also ruled the EU must pay legal costs incurred by the Mubarak family, and that the unfrozen funds would be made available after the expiry of the 70-day period for appealing the court’s decisions.

"We have already received a substantial payment from the EU Council to refund our legal costs as ordered by the EU Court of Justice," Gamal Mubarak said, affirming that the family will recover more of the legal costs in the future as ordered by the General Court.

The freezes were initially adopted in 2011 and were intended to assist the Egyptian authorities recover misappropriated state-owned assets.

"This acknowledged once again that restrictive measures imposed on the family by the EU Council were unlawful from the outset," Mubarak's family statement said.

Forced into international legal battle

The threat of bringing legal proceedings to bear was an unplanned step that the family has been forced into it, the video statement said.

"We were fully committed to vindicating our position solely before the Egyptian judiciary," Gamal Mubarak said. "However, our hand was forced by the Egyptian authorities, who made a deliberate decision to pursue us in international jurisdictions," he added.

He added that the family was left no choice but to vigorously defend its poisition before judicial authorities in foreign jurisidcitions.

Gamal Mubarak said all international legal proceedings found no single instance of assets hidden overseas by the Mubarak family members.

"So, in conclusion, no illicit assets, no concealed assets, and no unexplained sources of assets have been attributed to any member of the Mubarak family," the statement added.

Gamal Mubarak blamed "the forces opposing the president" of seizing on a decade-long "ferocious campaign of false allegations" of corruption against the Mubarak family.

"That campaign continued unabated for over ten years while we were consumed with fighting our legal battles," he said.

Mubarak's wish

Gamal Mubarak pointed to his father's "wish" to have the legal proceedings against the family explained to the world after he stepped down in 2011 amid mass protests.

"His passing before such proceedings were concluded means that I carry that burden on my shoulders, a burden that I carry with pride and commitment," Gamal Mubarak said.

The statement said that the family over the past decade has faced "countless" probes and court proceedings in Egypt and abroad, in which the family has participated "with the utmost of respect to the judiciary."

"In doing so, President Mubarak affirmed a cardinal principle enshrined in the rule of law which he so deeply respected; that no one is above the law, including the president," Gamal Mubarak added.

In a recorded message broadcast in April 2011, the former president said Egyptians need to know that he held assets in only one bank in Egypt.

Gamal Mubarak said his father was always confident against all odds and amid the darkest times that "we will eventually prevail," adding that the former president confronted this legal battle with patience and valor.

"This was indeed your final battle in a long journey full of battles and hardships; a battle I continued on your behalf," Gamal Mubarak said in a message dedicated to his late father.

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