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New charge against Hassan Mustafa

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Alexandrian political activist already in jail pending trial for attacking prosecutor

Sidi Gaber prosecution referred Alexandrian political activist Hassan Mustafa to the criminal court on Tuesday.   ( Photo -  courtesy of his family )

Sidi Gaber prosecution referred Alexandrian political activist Hassan Mustafa to the criminal court on Tuesday.
( Photo – courtesy of his family )

Sidi Gaber prosecution referred Alexandrian political activist Hassan Mustafa to the criminal court on Tuesday. He is accused of inciting citizens to block the railway and helping detainees escape.

The political activist’s latest charge dates back to January when police arrested 12 activists in Alexandria after they attempted to stop trains departing from the Egypt Railroad Station. They were protesting the Al Badrashin train crash that killed 19 and injured almost 120 army conscripts in mid-January.

Mustafa was sentenced to two years in prison in March. He was arrested on 21 January and accused of physically attacking prosecutor Ahmed Darwish.

Hamdy Khalaf, Mustafa’s lawyer, said he went with Mustafa and other lawyers to the police station on that day to voice their solidarity with the detainees.

“We were quickly detained and attacked by police forces,” Khalaf said. He added that the former Alexandria Security Director Abdel Mawgoud Lotfy intervened and ordered their release. “He personally apologised for the treatment we received and sent us home.”

The next day, Khalaf said they were surprised to find that the prosecution had accused the lawyers of escaping from detainment and said that others helped them to escape.

Mohamed Salem, Mustafa’s brother, said that if the case is referred to court, they will call upon Lotfy to testify that he ordered their release.

Salem said that Mustafa would be referred to investigation under the latest charges on Tuesday or Wednesday. He claimed the latest charges were an attempt by the prosecution to keep Mustafa in jail since his appeal of the previous verdict against him means that he could be acquitted.

During Mustafa’s latest trial session on Saturday, the judge ordered the summoning of the witnesses testifying against him to court. “It seems the judge is beginning to doubt Darwish’s lies and believe in Mustafa’s innocence,” Salem said. “That’s why the prosecution is intent on involving Mustafa in another court case to keep him in jail.”

“The latest charges are driven by the obvious political enmity between Mustafa and the current regime,” Khalaf said.

Mustafa is a well-known activist in Alexandria. He was arrested on 6 April 2008 during a demonstration supporting the Mahalla workers’ strike.


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