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New appeal date set in grisly prisoner transfer case - Daily News Egypt

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New appeal date set in grisly prisoner transfer case

37 inmates suffocated to death in police van, four officers had guilty verdict overturned in June

The Court of Cassation is set to hear the appeal in the Abu Zaabal prisoner transfer case on 22 January 2015, according to state-owned newspaper Al-Ahram.

The Khanka Misdemeanour Court of Appeals overturned in June a 10-year sentence for the vice warden of the Heliopolis Police Station and one year sentences for three other police officers. The file was passed back to the prosecutor general for consideration.

Forty-five detainees were set to be transferred from the Heliopolis Police Station to Abu Zaabal Prison on 18 August 2013. The detainees in the back of the transfer van allegedly caused a disturbance, which prompted the officers to fire a teargas canister into the van. A total of 37 people suffocated in the back of the van.

The prosecution charged the officers with manslaughter after their inability to prove their criminal intent in murder, which is a prerequisite in first-degree murder. Lawyers hoped the overturning of the guilty verdicts in June could result in a change of the charges.

The men were being transferred following a three-day investigation by the prosecution into their role in the Rabaa Al-Adaweya sit-in, which was violently dispersed on 14 August 2013. The sit-in was set up in June 2013 in support of former President Mohamed Morsi, ousted in July of that year, in response to calls for him to call early presidential elections.


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