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Court Sentences Ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi to 40 years in Prison, 2 Al Jazeera Employees to Death

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BERLIN, GERMANY - JANUARY 30:  Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi arrives at the Chancellery to meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on January 30, 2013 in Berlin, Germany. Mursi has come to Berlin despite the ongoing violent protests in recent days in cities across Egypt that have left at least 50 people dead. Mursi is in Berlin to seek both political and financial support from Germany.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

Mohamed Morsi

Egypt’s deposed Islamist president Mohammed Morsi was on Saturday sentenced to 40 years in prison on charges of leaking secret state documents to Qatar when he was in office.

The decision was made by the Cairo Criminal Court, which announced two separate jail terms of 25 years and 15 years against Morsi on different counts.

Two former aides to Morsi were sentenced to life terms, which under Egyptian law is 25 years.

The court also confirmed preliminary death sentences given last month to six defendants in the same case.

The six, convicted of espionage, included three journalists, who were tried in absentia. Two of the three are employees of the Qatari television network Al Jazeera.

Confirmation of the death verdicts came after the country’s Chief Islamic legal authority – The Grand Mufti – approved them, as required by Egyptian law in cases involving death sentences.

The rulings against Morsi and all other defendants can be appealed.

Qatar was a key ally of Morsi’s now-banned Muslim Brotherhood.

Human Rights group, Amnesty International has condemned the death sentences.

“While this outcome is appalling, it is sadly not surprising,” Magdalena Mughrabi-Talhami, the watchdog’s deputy director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme, said.

“Egypt’s broken and utterly corrupted justice system is now little more than a handy tool for the authorities’ repression of any vestiges of opposition or criticism,” she added in a statement.

The Egyptian government has repeatedly rejected criticism of heavy-handed sentences against Islamists, saying that the country’s courts operate independently.

Morsi, Egypt’s first democratically elected president was toppled by the military in 2013 following mass protests against his rule.

In June 2015, another court sentenced him to death after convicting him of involvement in a mass prison escape during Egypt’s 2011 uprising. This sentence is also subject to appeal.

The court also handed him a life term on charges of conspiring with foreign organisations in conducting the jailbreak.

He is being tried in a separate case on charges of insulting the judiciary.

Several senior leaders in the Muslim Brotherhood and their followers have been sentenced to death in different cases since Morsi’s toppling.

The Islamist group has dismissed the sentences and other harsh verdicts as politically motivated.

Photo Credit: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) was established by the Federal Government of Nigeria in May 1976 to gather and distribute news on Nigeria and cover events of interest to Nigeria at the international level for the benefit of the Nigerian Media and the Public.

3 Comments

  1. Iris

    June 19, 2016 at 2:48 pm

    *sigh* So the people’s revolution was for nothing.

  2. David Felix

    June 19, 2016 at 3:12 pm

    This people are mean.

  3. Tosin

    June 20, 2016 at 8:49 pm

    every few months they must pronounce some punishment on this Morsi. boring, bored, tired.

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