Monday Aug 15, 201109:25 AM GMT
Egypt's Mubarak due back in court
Mon Aug 15, 2011 4:41AM
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Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is due to appear in the second session of his trial on Monday with his two sons Alaa and Gamal who share corruption charges with him.


The security seems to be tighter than the first session, as the riot police has managed to separate both anti- and pro-Mubarak demonstrators to avoid clashes that happened repeatedly during the first court session, a Press TV correspondent reported Monday.

The Egyptians' sentiments about Mubarak's trial remain the same as people are still calling for revenge for about 850 peaceful protesters who were shot to death by Mubarak's order.

There are also almost 150 to 200 pro-Mubarak protesters who are wearing similar shirts, carrying banners that say do not humiliate the man who ran Egypt over 30 years.

Mubarak is accused of involvement in the killing of peaceful protesters in the Egyptian revolution and abuse of his power throughout his prolonged ruling.

He also shares murder charges with his former Interior Minister Habib al-Adly, who has already been sentenced to 17 years in prison after being convicted on corruption charges, and six former police commanders.

The other defendants are being tried by the same judge in separate hearings as their cases were adjourned to September 5.

In the first session of trial on August 3, Mubarak appeared in the court room on a stretcher inside a black metal cage after being flown by a military plane from a hospital in the Red Sea resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh.

He was summoned to the court after medical examinations proved that he was healthy enough to stand trial. Mubarak and his sons, however, pleaded not guilty and denied all the charges.

The trial of Egypt's fallen dictator will focus on investigating the evidence and calling witnesses first for the prosecution and then for the defense, said a recently retired deputy head of Cairo's appeals court Ahmed Mekki.

Mubarak's lawyer Farid al-Deeb has asked the court's judge Ahmed Refaat to call 1,600 witnesses, including the country's top military officials.

Meanwhile, one of the lawyers representing victims argues that the lengthy process of trial and the court's likely decision to choose the list of witnesses will give Mubarak a chance to appeal a possible guilty verdict.

"If the court does not listen to all the witnesses, it will give grounds for appeal," said Taher Abu Nasr, whose Front for the Defence of Egyptian Protesters represents 35 plaintiffs.

Legal experts say a thorough investigation into Mubarak's crimes should have taken more months, but the case was filed under street pressure and the military and government sped up the trial to appease families of the victims and protesters.

AO/MGH/HRF
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