Egyptian media is reporting that am Egyptian Attorney General has referred 15 Muslim Brotherhood leaders to criminal court on accusations of burning Damietta’s national security building. According to an Ahram Online report, one of the accused is well-known extremist cleric Safwat Hegazy:
Ahram Online, Tuesday 4 Feb 2014 Damietta Attorney General Mohamed Al-Zenefly referred 15 members from the Muslim Brotherhood, including Ashraf Ezz El-Din, dean of the medical school at Al-Azhar University in Damietta, to a criminal court on Tuesday, Al-Ahram Arabic reported. They were referred to the court for accusations of burning Damietta’s national security building.
Several people attempted to burn the building on August 14, when Brotherhood sit-ins were dispersed in Rabaa El-Adaweya Square and Nahda Square. Security forces and citizens confronted them. Security forces used tear gas to disperse them.
The prosecution has also accused the defendants of inciting violence and providing funding for arms.
Al-Zenefly also referred 54 members of the Brotherhood including the former governor of El-Gharbeya governorate, Ahmed El-Bili, and the secretary general of El-Gharbeya’s Freedom and Justice Party to a criminal court on accusations of killing and injuring 26 people.
Meanwhile, a Cairo criminal court resumed on Tuesday the trial of Egypt’s ousted president Mohamed Morsi on charges of inciting the killing of protesters during his presidency.
The trial of 48 Morsi supporters including prominent Muslim Brotherhood figures as well as the group’s Supreme Guide Mohamed Badie, was adjourned by a Cairo criminal court to 15 February.
Among the supporters, high-ranking Brotherhood leaders such as Safwat Hegazy and Mohamed El-Beltagy are accused of blocking a highway in Qalioubiya governorate north of Shubra during the political upheaval following Morsi’s 3 July ouster.”
For a profile on Safwat Hegazy, go here.
In related news, Egyptian media reported last week that funds owned by 46 Muslim Brotherhood leaders were seized by a panel appraising the group’s finances.
Other media also reported last week that Muslim Brotherhood leaders imprisoned pending interrogation on various charges were moved to a maximum-security detention facility. Deputy chairman of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) Essam al-Erian and party executive office member Mohamed al-Beltagi were reportedly moved to the same facility last year.