By Abdel Rahman Youssef
ALEXANDRIA: Head of the Alexandria Criminal Court decided Wednesday to indefinitely adjourn the trial of police officers accused of killing Jan. 25 protesters due to security reasons.
Justice Mahmoud Abdel Hady told reporters that the court received a security report stating the difficulty in securing the courtroom. The report recommended transferring the trial to a court away from populated areas or to Cairo.
Clashes erupted Tuesday between army forces and martyrs’ families and their supporters. Scuffles also took place inside the courtroom Tuesday as police cordoned the dock in which the defendants were standing to the outrage of families.
Abdel Hady said that he will refer the matter to the head of Alexandria Appeals Court for a final decision.
It would not be the first time a high-profile trial is moved far from its original constituency. The trial of policeman accused of killing protesters in Suez during the Jan. 25 uprising is held in Cairo, a move that lawyers claim was illegal.
Abdel Hady left the courtroom on Wednesday under heavy security.
Security forces also withdrew from the courtroom, leaving the families of martyrs confused.
Civil society lawyer Khalaf Bayoumi said that the trial could be adjourned to April in the court’s next round.
The court was meant to continue exhibiting the case evidence including videos showing the clashes between protesters and police forces that left over 96 dead and 490 injured in Alexandria.