Millennium Post

Egypt overturns 545 life, death sentences

A local court on Saturday ordered a retrial after overturning 37 death sentences and 491 life sentences awarded to Muslim Brotherhood members in an internationally criticised mass trial. The Court of Cassation accepted the appeals of 545 Islamist defendants, who were awarded life and death sentences in 2013.

In April last year, 37 defendants were sentenced to death, while 491 others were sentenced to life in prison. 17 others were acquitted. The defendants were found guilty of killing a policeman and setting on fire Matay police station in the southern province of Minya.

They are accused of inciting violence, killing the high- rank policeman and setting fire to the police station shortly after the security forces dispersed the pro-Muslim Brotherhood sit-ins in Rabaa and Giza areas, causing the death of hundreds of protesters. The mass death sentences were criticised by international and local rights groups.

Thousands of pro-Morsi and Muslim Brotherhood members were rounded up and put on trial since the army deposed the Islamist leader Mohamed Morsi in 2013 following massive street protests against his rule. Morsi is currently in prison on charges of killing protesters, and insulting the judiciary but has not been sentenced in any case so far.


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