CAIRO: The head of the Judges’ Club is expected to submit a complaint against a number of lawyers after the next appeal hearing of Ehab Saey El-Din and Moustafa Fatouh, lawyer Mohamed Suliman told Daily News Egypt Wednesday.
“I think [counselor Ahmed El-Zend] does not wish to use all his cards at once…waiting till lawyers are exhausted of striking. But he will escalate the situation after the hearing on July 18,” Suliman, also a strike committee member in Gharbeya governorate, added.
Last month, hundreds of lawyers reportedly stormed the office of Ehab Esmat, the Attorney General in Tanta city, the capital of Gharbeya, holding him inside for a few hours, and assaulting his office manager.
The lawyers’ move was a reaction to a verdict handed down against lawyers Saey El-Din and Fatouh for attacking the local prosecutor.
Since then no investigation was conducted into the incident, while Esmat promised to leave it on the shelf. But reports recently said that El-Zend had threatened to seek punishment against more than 20 lawyers involved in the incident.
On their part, the lawyers threatened to hold an open strike if El-Zend carries out his threat.
Whether El-Zend has already taken an action against lawyers or not is still open to question.
On Monday, independent daily Al-Masry Al-Youm newspaper quoted judiciary sources as saying that El-Zend had already submitted a file on the crisis between lawyers and judges to the Public Prosecutor.
The club’s Crisis Management Committee reportedly documented lawyers’ violations and anti-judicial protests supported with photos, videos of lawyers’ comments on TV talk shows and archived news reports.
However, one day later El-Zend denied these reports saying that he never submitted any files to the Public Prosecutor.
Al-Masry Al-Youm argued that the report was based on judiciary sources and that El-Zend announced he had formed a committee to work on the file.
According to Al-Masry Al-Youm, El-Zend did not refute the existence of the file. Rather, he denied that he headed to the Public Prosecutor’s office to submit it.
Last month, a crisis has erupted between lawyers on the one hand and judges and prosecutors on the other following the imprisonment of Saey El-Din and Fatouh.
Both lawyers were found guilty of assaulting and offending Basem Abu El-Rous, the local prosecutor in Tanta city, the capital of Gharbeya governorate, and were sentenced to five years in prison.
Saey El-Din and Fatouh claimed that they were attacked by Abu El-Rous first.
In response to the verdict, thousands of lawyers held strikes and sit-ins for several days nationwide, which further heightened the tension between the two camps.
The outraged lawyers’ stance was supported by syndicate chairman Hamdy Khalifa and the syndicate board.
The verdict was appealed; yet the court did not release the two defendants on remand, causing more fury among lawyers.
Lawyers from all over Egypt will meet at a public conference Thursday in Gharbeya’s Mahala city to discuss the next move before the coming appeal session.