An Egyptian court today sentenced ousted President Mohamed Morsi to death over his part in a mass prison break that took place during the 2011 uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak. As is customary in passing capital punishment, Judge Shaaban el-Shami referred his death sentence on Morsi and more than 100 others to the nation's top Muslim theologian, or mufti; the BBC reports that he'll give an opinion as to whether the sentences should hold. And even if that opinion is an affirmative one, Morsi may still appeal. The judge set June 2 for the next hearing.
Morsi, Egypt's first freely elected president, was ousted by the military in July 2013 following days of mass street protests by Egyptians demanding that he be removed because of his divisive policies. The ousted leader already is serving a 20-year sentence following his conviction on April 21 on charges linked to the killing of protesters outside a Cairo presidential palace in December 2012. Morsi escaped a death sentence in a separate case before el-Shami related to allegations that Morsi, several of his aides, and leaders of his now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood allegedly passed state secrets to foreign groups, including the Palestinian militant Hamas group and Lebanon's Hezbollah, during his one year in office. (Read more Mohamed Morsi stories.)