World Bulletin / News Desk
Four former officers in a now dissolved Egyptian security agency were sentenced in absentia to life in prison on Thursday for torturing to death a man during investigations into the bombing of a church on New Year's Day 2011.
A fifth officer, the only one to attend the trial, was jailed for 15 years for his role in the death of Mohamed Sayyid Bilal, whose body was returned to his family a day after his arrest showing signs of torture and burns.
Bilal, 32 at the time of his death, was a Salafi Muslim.
Many other Salafis were rounded up following the bombing in Alexandria which killed 23 people and has still not been explained. Habib el-Adli, the interior minister at the time, accused the Army of Islam, a Gaza-based group, of carrying out the attack, something it quickly denied.
Following the uprising against Mubarak's 30 years in power, conspiracy theories circulated widely in Egypt that Adli himself had ordered the bombing. Both Adli and Mubarak were sentenced to life in prison earlier this month over the deaths of hundreds of protesters killed in the uprising.
"These verdicts are the beginning of the cleansing of the interior ministry of the corrupt people who squandered the dignity of the Egyptian people for 30 years," said Khalaf Bayoumi, the lawyer for Bilal's family.
Those convicted on Thursday were all members of State Security, an agency tantamount to Egypt's Stasi that was a hated symbol of Mubarak's rule. Its reputation for brutality helped fuel the uprising against Mubarak.
Judge Mohamed Mustafa Tirana gave life sentences to Hossam al-Shenawy, Osama al-Kunaysi, Ahmed Mustafa Kamal and Mohamed Abdel Aleem. Mohamed Abdel Rahman al-Shemi, the only one of the accused in court, was sentenced to 15 years in prison.
State Security was dissolved on March 15, weeks after Mubarak's Feb. 11 removal from power, after protesters stormed its headquarters.
Russian parliament approves Internet privacy bill that would require Internet search engines to remove users' personal information from their results.
Greek referendum Grexit poll results shows 'No' vote at 43 pct, 'Yes' vote at 42.5 pct
Human Rights Council denounces Israel’s refusal to cooperate with Gaza commission
The head of Greece's banking association says Greek banks have 1 bln euro liquidity cushion
More than 70 percent of Kenya's electricity comes from green and other renewable energy sources
Administration stands down after prime minister defeated in party poll
Before the first anniversary of Israel launching "Operation Protective Edge" UN calls to prosecute Gaza war crimes.
Worshippers from Jerusalem and the West Bank started flocking to Al-Aqsa Mosque from dawn. Hundreds of Israeli police officers were spread out across the entrances and exits.
Greek PM says the report on Greek economy published by IMF, is a great vindication for the Greek government
The Srebrenica genocide of 1995 resulted in the death of more than 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys. 136 have been identified and will be laid to rest on July 11.
A cache of weapons suspected of belonging to the Boko Haram has been found in a house in the capital
The United Nations and the Council of Europe say Hungary's new asylum bill is a blow to refugee protection
A minimum of 100,000 people is required before a national debate must be called, and having passed the threshold the debate must now be held in the held Austrian parliament.
BP Plc has reached a settlement with U.S. authorities and will pay about $18.7 billion in damages for water pollution caused by the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill
Jean-Marie Le Pen's suspension from the National Front has been overturned; his daughter and current party leader says she will appeal the court verdict
The Palestinian Authority forces arrested 108 Hamas members in the West Bank in one of the biggest raids in years.