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Egypt upholds nine death sentences over top prosecutor's assassination Open in fullscreen

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Egypt upholds nine death sentences over top prosecutor's assassination

Hisham Barakat was killed when a bomb struck his convoy in June 2015 [AFP]

Date of publication: 25 November, 2018

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Egypt's court of cassation has upheld death sentences for nine people convicted over the murder of Hisham Barakat in 2015.


An Egyptian court on Sunday upheld death sentences for nine people convicted of the murder of a top prosecutor in a car bombing, a judiciary source said.

Hisham Barakat was killed in June 2015 when a bomb struck his convoy in Cairo after militants called for attacks on the judiciary to avenge a crackdown on Islamists.

An Egyptian criminal court sentenced 28 people to death in 2017 for their alleged involvement in his murder. Only 15 of the defendants were present in court for the verdict at the time.

On Sunday, Egypt's court of cassation confirmed the death sentence for nine of the 15, while reducing the sentences of the six others to life imprisonment, the judicial source said.

The verdicts of the other defendants were not considered because they had been sentenced in absentia.

No one claimed the attack against Barakat but authorities pointed the finger at supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood movement, which was banned after a coup removed Islamist president Mohamad Morsi in 2013.

Since Morsi's overthrow, Egypt's government has led a far-reaching crackdown on dissent, including against journalists, activists and supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Hundreds of Morsi supporters have been sentenced to death, while the former president and top Brotherhood figures have also faced trial.

The UN and human rights groups have condemned Egypt's liberal use of death sentences, while Amnesty International have said men condemned to death were tortured into making confessions.

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