Egypt Orders Mubarak Retrial

Could present political peril for successor Mohammed Morsi
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jan 13, 2013 6:15 AM CST
Egypt Orders Mubarak Retrial
In this June 2, 2012 file photo, Egypt's ex-President Hosni Mubarak lays on a gurney inside a barred cage in the police academy courthouse in Cairo, Egypt.   (Anonymous)

A court granted Hosni Mubarak's appeal of his life sentence, today ordering a retrial of the ousted Egyptian president on charges that he failed to prevent the killing of hundreds of protesters during the uprising that toppled his regime nearly two years ago. The judge also overturned the conviction of Mubarak's security chief Habib el-Adly, who is also serving a life sentence after his conviction on the same charges. He too will be retried.

Mubarak will not walk free, as he is being held on other charges. The 84-year-old's current state of his health is unknown. Mubarak's lawyers had argued that he did not know of the killings, but an Egyptian fact-finding mission has determined that he watched the uprising unfold through a live TV feed at his palace. The mission's report could hold both political opportunities and dangers for Mubarak's successor, Mohammed Morsi. A new Mubarak trial would be popular, since many Egyptians were angered he was convicted for failing to stop the killings, rather than ordering the crackdown. But the report also implicates the military and security officials in the protesters' deaths. Any move to prosecute them could spark a backlash from the powerful police and others who still hold positions under Morsi's government. (Read more Egypt stories.)

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