Thu, Aug 22, 2013 - Page 1 News List

Mubarak could be freed from jail

Reuters and AP, CAIRO

Egyptian prosecutors will not appeal against a court ruling ordering the release of former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak from jail, the prosecutor overseeing the case said yesterday.

“The decision to release Mubarak issued today ... is final and the prosecution cannot appeal against it,” Judge Ahmed el-Bahrawi said.

The order followed a hearing on charges against Mubarak of accepting gifts from a state-owned newspaper, the last case that has kept him in detention.

Top prison official Mostafa Baz told the private CBC TV station that his offices will ask the prosecutors today if Mubarak is wanted in other cases. If not, he would be set free.

Mubarak is now on trial for the killing of protesters during the 2011 uprising against him and other charges.

He was found guilty and sentenced to life in prison last year for failing to stop the killing of about 900 protesters in Egypt’s 2011 uprising. His sentence was overturned on appeal and he is now being retried, along with his security chief and six top police commanders. His trial resumes later this month.

He is facing a number of other corruption charges, but no other trial dates have been set.

Rights lawyer and judicial expert Nasser Amin said procedurally Mubarak should have been released since his sentence was overturned, but that the political circumstances may delay letting him go.

“His release will cause chaos,” he said. “It will be used by Islamists as proof of the return of the old regime.”

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