Port Said massacre trial adjourned to 5 November

Ahram Online, Sunday 4 Nov 2012

Judge in Port Said massacre trial adjourns proceedings to allow defence pleas to be fully heard

Port Said
File photo: Blood is seen on a chair one day after supporters clashed at the Port Said stadium February 2, 2012. (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt's criminal court on Sunday adjourned to Monday the trial of 73 defendants, including nine senior police officers, accused of being responsible for the Port Said massacre of February 2012.

More than 70 Ahly footbal team fans were killed 1 February when they were attacked by Port Said's Masry supporters following an ill-tempered Egyptian Premier League game.

Of the suspects who were detained and face trial, most are natives of Port Said.

Judge Sobhi Abdel-Meguid, overseeing the trial, ordered the postponement Sunday to continue hearing the defence.

Defence of the accused demanded the release of the suspects, claiming that the testimonies of 12 eyewitnesses against the accused have shown contradictions that bring into question their reliability.

The lawyer of one of the accused, Tarek El-Arabi, handed in a document from Port Said Hospital claiming that his client was present at the hospital during the match.

Another alibi given to the court asserted that defendant Mohamed Hosni hosted 14 members of the Ultras Ahlawy youth at his apartment for lunch and gave them a ride to the train station.

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