Egypt convicts top anti-corruption official of ‘false news’

Author(s): Brian Rohan, Associated Press | Date: July 28, 2016 | Language: English
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An Egyptian court on Thursday convicted the country’s former top anti-corruption official of “spreading false news” over a damning report he had issued, sentencing him to a year in prison that he must pay fines to avoid.

Judge Haitham el-Saghair passed the verdict against former chief auditor Hesham Genena, who had alleged that massive corruption had cost the country billions of dollars. He also fined him 20,000 Egyptian pounds ($2,250) which, if paid along with an additional 10,000 pounds, will allow him to avoid incarceration.

Genena, a former judge, had led the Central Auditing Organization until he was dismissed by a decree from Egypt’s general-turned-politician President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.

His lawyer, Ali Taha, said Genena would pay the fines to avoid jail time but appeal the verdict by the Cairo Misdemeanor Court, saying that prosecutors had showed no proof of their accusations and that the court had not examined the defense. Photographers and video cameras were banned from the court session.

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