Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Egypt: Hosni Mubarak's trial resumes

Following the reopening of former president Hosni Mubarak's trial in Cairo, his defence team began arguing the case. Mubarak stands accused of ordering the killing of demonstrators during national unrest, which led to his resignation last year.

According to Egypt's State media, the defence's arguments are expected to be heard over the course of three days.

Prosecutors insist Mubarak face the death penalty, along with his co-defendants, the former interior minister Minister Habib al-Adly and six senior policemen. Mubarak's two sons, Gamal and Alaa, are facing separate charges of corruption in the same trial.

The former Egyptian ruler was wheeled into court on a stretcher. His laywers said Mubarak was unable to be upright for fear of suffering a stroke.

The charges against the defendant are as follow:

Hosni Mubarak: Conspiring in killing of protesters (15 years in prison or death penalty); abusing power to amass wealth (5-15 years)
Alaa and Gamal: abusing power to amass wealth (5-15 years)
Al-Adly and six police officials: conspiring in killing of protesters (15 years or death penalty)
Business mogul Hussein Salem: tried in absentia for corruption (5-15 years in prison).

According to a number of Egyptian sources, Mubarak's lawyer Farid al-Deeb is expected to reveal several surprises as he makes his case; however, he refused to elaborate when speaking to Al-Madry Al-Youm newspaper. He said: "Nobody knows what I will say."

Sources: BBC News, Reuters, AP

For more news and expert analysis about Egypt, please see Egypt Politics & Security.

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