Mubarak, sons to stand criminal trial 3 August

The Cairo Court of Appeals on Wednesday set 3 August as the date for the trial of former President Hosni Mubarak, his two sons, Alaa and Gamal, and businessman Hussein Salem.

They face charges of illegal acquisition of wealth and selling Egyptian natural gas to Israel at extremely low prices.

Attorney General Abdel Meguid Mahmoud referred Mubarak, his sons and Salem for criminal trial on 24 May.

Mahmoud accused the defendants of being involved in the gas exports to Israel deal, squandering state funds and illegally gaining financial benefits for themselves and others.

According to Mahmoud’s statement about the referral, the former president was involved, along with former Interior Minister Habib al-Adly and some senior police officers, in the killing and attempted murder of peaceful protesters during the revolution.

The referral decision also stated that Mubarak and Adly incited members of the police force to fire live ammunition at protesters and to run over them with vehicles, with the intent to disperse or kill them.

Mubarak exploited his influence with relevant authorities to gain illegal benefits for himself and his two sons, the statement said.

It said Mubarak allowed Salem to seize hundreds of thousands of acres of state-owned land in the most prestigious tourist areas of Sharm el-Sheikh, a resort city on the Red Sea.

Gamal and Alaa Mubarak are accused of abusing their influence as the president’s sons to facilitate Salem’s access to state land in exchange for real estate they received from Salem.

The prosecution said Mubarak, Salem, former Petroleum Minister Sameh Fahmi and other ministry officials were involved in enabling Salem to obtain illegal financial benefits exceeding US$2 billion by assigning Salem’s company the contract to sell Egyptian natural gas to Israel at low prices.

(www.almasryalyoum.com / 01.06.2011)

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