UPDATED: Egyptian activist Douma to remain in custody pending investigation

Ahram Online , Tuesday 4 Jun 2013

After being released by Tanta court after posting bail, Egyptian political activist Ahmed Douma will nevertheless remain in detention pending investigation of additional charges against him

Despite having been granted a release order by a Tanta court after posting bail set at LE5,000, Egyptian political activist Ahmed Douma is to remain in police custody pending investigation of a separate case against him.

The Tanta court had postponed to 26 October Douma's appeal against a verdict that had sentenced him to six months in prison for insulting President Mohamed Morsi, but ordered his release once bail was posted.

Prosecutor-General Talaat Abdullah then ordered Douma's custody to be extended so he might be questioned over charges that he had incited an assault on the Muslim Brotherhood's Cairo headquarters in March.

Douma, who had been detained since 30 April, was convicted on Monday of a number of charges, including insulting the president and circulating false news on a television programme.

He had called President Morsi a "killer" and a "criminal," and said that the president was "wanted" by the state, referring to the fact that Morsi had escaped prison during Egypt's 2011 popular uprising.

Finding Douma guilty, the court said that such acts threatened to "undermine state security and terrorise people."

Douma, a political activist since the Mubarak era, had been previously arrested in 2012, following a clash with military personnel outside Egyptian cabinet headquarters near Cairo's Tahrir Square.

Accused of incitement and vandalism, he was conditionally released last April pending further investigation.

On 16 March, Douma – along with other activists – was beaten by Muslim Brotherhood supporters while painting anti-Brotherhood graffiti outside the group's headquarters in Cairo's Moqattam district. 

He is now being investigated for inciting a protest the following week in which demonstrators clashed violently with Brotherhood supporters.

The leftist activist opted not to file a legal complaint against the Brotherhood due to what he described as his "lack of trust" in Egypt's justice system, vowing instead to fight the Islamist group "politically."

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