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Egypt Sentences Top Muslim Brotherhood Leader to Life in Prison

Egypt Sentences Top Muslim Brotherhood Leader to Life in Prison

Monday, 18 April, 2022 - 06:45
Mahmoud Ezzat appears before the Criminal Court in 2021. (AFP)

An Egyptian court on Sunday sentenced Mahmoud Ezzat, the 76-year-old top leader of the banned Muslim Brotherhood, to life in prison in the case publicly known as the “Storming of Egyptian Eastern Borders.”

The Cairo Criminal Court sentenced Ezzat, the acting supreme guide of the Muslim Brotherhood, to life for storming Egyptian prisons, attacking security and police facilities and killing officers during the January 25, 2011 revolution.

According to the indictment, the convicts killed 32 prison guards in Abu Zaabal prison, 14 prisoners in Wadi al-Natrun prison, and a prisoner in al-Marj prison and released around 20,000 prisoners. They were also accused of abducting three border guards and forcibly taking them to the Gaza Strip.

The prosecution accused Ezzat and other Brotherhood members of collaborating with the Palestinian Hamas movement, Muslim Brotherhood’s international leadership, Lebanese Hezbollah, and some extremists from Sinai Bedouins to commit acts that undermine Egypt’s independence, unity and territorial integrity.

They are also accused of training elements from Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps to commit hostile and military acts in the country, storm buildings and prisons and smuggle prisoners loyal to them, including foreigners and Egyptians, as well as criminals. They provided them with support, information, money and false identity cards to enter the country, in addition to means of transportation to commit the crimes.

A life sentence in Egypt is 25 years in jail.

In 2015, Ezzat was handed a death sentence in absentia, as well as given life imprisonment, after being found guilty of planning the assassination of soldiers and government officials.

Ezzat was arrested in Cairo in August 2020 after being on the run for several years.

He was found guilty of “incitement to murder” and of having “supplied weapons” during clashes between demonstrators outside the headquarters of the Muslim Brotherhood in 2013.

In December 2021, Ezzat was sentenced to life for espionage with several foreign organizations and parties, including Hamas, the Revolutionary Guards Corps and Hezbollah and disclosure of national security information.

The Brotherhood was blacklisted in 2013 and deemed a terrorist group.

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