30th May, 2016
An Egyptian criminal court on Monday handed down a life sentence to the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood along with 35 other members of the outlawed Islamist group, a state-run news agency reported.
Mohamed Badie, the group’s “Supreme Guide,” was among those found guilty of engaging in violent acts in the northeastern governorate of Ismailia in the wake of protests over the 2013 ouster of former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy, Egypt’s state-run MENA reported.
The court found the men guilty of killing three citizens in Ismailia governorate and attempting to kill 16 others, and attempting to occupy an official building in July 2013, Egyptian state media agency Al-Ahram reported.
Morsy, an Islamist, was elected President in June 2012 in the country’s first free elections, following the overthrow of dictator Hosni Mubarak more than a year earlier.
However, a popular uprising against Morsy’s rule broke out in June 2013, and he was deposed in a coup.
The new government outlawed the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization, and Badie, Morsy and other members were arrested.
Following Badie’s arrest in August 2013, the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice political party described the charges against him as “trumped up” and “political.”
The verdict, which is subject to appeal, is the seventh life sentence handed to Badie in various trials, Al-Ahram reported.
Badie has also been sentenced to death in three other trials, with the Court of Cassation revoking two of the death sentences and ordering retrials, and an appeal against the third currently under deliberation, Al-Ahram reported.
Hundreds of Muslim Brotherhood members have received death sentences since Morsy’s ouster in a government crackdown that Western governments and human rights groups have condemned.
Many of the severe sentences have been overturned on appeal.