The nephew of former president Mohamed Morsi was sentenced to life imprisonment on Saturday for the attempted murder of a fellow student at Zagazig University, state media reported.
Mohamed Said, 25, was a law student at the university until May, when he was suspended due to charges in several different court cases. The charges leading to his life sentence were related to an incident that took place in December 2013, during pro-Morsi student protests in Zagazig University.
The prosecution found that Said, along with three other students, physically assaulted another student who disagreed with their political views. The gravity of the assault warranted a conviction for attempted murder. The three other students were also sentenced to life.
Said was already serving a previous conviction, dating back to July, when he was sentenced to five years for inciting violence against the army and the police.
Egypt’s armed forces overthrew Morsi in July 2013, after he refused to take heed of massive demonstrations calling for his resignation. Security forces then violently dispersed pro-Morsi sit-ins in Rabaa Al-Adaweya and Nahda squares in August 2013, killing hundreds of protesters. Sporadic anti-government protests have continued ever since across Egypt, particularly on university campuses.
University students began a new academic year in October, amid riot police and in some institutions private security forces. Student protests resulted in violent clashes with the authorities on several campuses.
One university student in Alexandria died on 21 October as a result of birdshot wounds. Hundreds more have been arrested, according to the Association for Freedom of Thought and Expression, an independent Egyptian rights group.
Morsi is currently in prison, awaiting trial on charges of espionage and incitement of murder and violence.