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Mubarak to be released

By Agencies in Cairo, Egypt | China Daily | Updated: 2013-08-20 07:54

Mubarak to be released

Former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak waves to his supporters from inside a cage in a courtroom at the police academy in Cairo, on April 13. Mubarak, who was overthrown in an uprising in 2011, will be released from jail in the next 48 hours after a prosecutor cleared him in a corruption case, his lawyer Fareed el-Deeb said on Monday. Reuters

An Egyptian court on Monday ordered the release of former president Hosni Mubarak over charges of looting funds allocated for maintaining presidential palaces, state- run news website Ahram reported.

Mubarak, who was overthrown in an uprising in 2011, will be released from jail soon, his lawyer and a judicial source said on Monday.

Mubarak, 85, was arrested after he was ousted. In scenes that mesmerized Arabs, the former leader appeared in a courtroom cage during his trial on charges that ranged from corruption to complicity in the murder of protesters.

More than a year on, the only legal grounds for Mubarak's continued detention rest on another corruption case which his lawyer, Fareed el-Deeb, said would be settled swiftly.

"All we have left is a simple administrative procedure that should take no more than 48 hours. He should be freed by the end of the week," Deeb said.

Without confirming that Mubarak would be freed, a judicial source said the former leader would spend another two weeks behind bars before judicial authorities made a final decision in the outstanding case against him.

Mubarak, along with his interior minister, was convicted and sentenced to life in prison last year for failing to stop the killing of protesters in the revolt that swept him from power.

He still faces a retrial after appeals from the prosecution and defense, but this would not necessarily require him to stay in jail. Mubarak did not appear at a hearing in the case on Saturday. He was also absent from Monday's proceedings.

In its first session of hearings, the Cairo Criminal Court also decided to jail Mubarak's two sons, Alaa and Gamal, pending investigations in the same case.

The court ordered the document of the case to be returned to the prosecution to indict another four suspects.


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