Defence lawyers for Muslim Brotherhood leaders and members filed appeals on Saturday against death and imprisonment sentences in the “prison break” and “espionage” trials.
The appeals have been filed to the Court of Cassation against in-presence sentences only in the two cases, according to state media. Sentences issued in absentia must first be revised by the first degree court that issued them, before an appeal in front of the cassation court is possible.
On 16 June, the Cairo Criminal Court sentenced former president Mohamed Morsi and five others to death on charges of participating in the storming of Egyptian prisons, attacking police facilities, and killing security personnel.
The court accused Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood of collaborating with the Palestinian group Hamas, Lebanon’s Hezbollah, and a militant member of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard.
Among the defendants who received death sentences are former parliamentary speaker Saad Al-Katatni, and Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) Vice Chairman Essam El-Erian.
A total of 80 others, some of whom are Palestinian, received death sentences in absentia. On the same day, the court revoked a death sentence against Morsi and ordered a life sentence instead in the espionage trial.
Sixteen other defendants, including Al-Katatni and Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide Mohamed Badie, received life sentences in the same case.
In addition, leading Brotherhood members Khairat El-Shater, Mohamed Al-Beltagy, and Ahmed Abdel Aaty received death sentences, while others were sentenced to seven years in prisom. The court also ratified the death sentences against 11 defendants in absentia.