Former Egypt President Mohammed Morsi gets Life Sentence
Former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi was on Saturday handed a life sentence by a Cairo criminal court on charges of espionage.
The sentencing of Morsi came during the final ruling in the trial of 11 people, including two Al Jazeera journalists accused of leaking state secrets to Qatar, ABC News writes.
The court also confirmed a ruling from May 7, when six of the defendants were sentenced to death.
Those sentenced to death include Ibrahim Helal, former director of news at Al Jazeera’s Arabic channel. He is not in Egypt and was tried in absentia.
The others sentenced to death – political activist Ahmed Afifi, flight attendant Mohamed Kilani, and academic Ahmed Ismail – were in state custody.
After that initial verdict, the court had to seek the advice of the highest religious leader in the country, the Grand Mufti Shawqi Allam, to be able to finalise the verdicts, although those verdicts can be appealed in Egypt’s Court of Cassation.
Proscribed Muslim Brotherhood (MB)-backed Morsi was overthrown by the military – led by Abdel Fattah el-Sisi – in July 2013 after mass protests a year after he took office.
Senior leaders in the MB and their followers have been sentenced to death in different cases since the overthrow of Morsi’s government.
The Muslim Brotherhood, which has since been banned, has dismissed the sentences and other harsh verdicts as politically motivated, despite claims by the government that the courts operate independently.
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