Court clears Mubarak’s chief of staff from illicit gains charges

Cairo Criminal Court on Saturday cleared former president Hosni Mubarak’s chief of staff from illicit gain charges.

Zakaria Azmy offered to pay back LE1.8 million in settlements for illicit gain charges last year, to avoid prosecution for illegally siphoning off the sums during his 50 years in public service.

The Court of Cassation turned down an earlier Cairo Criminal Court ruling that sentenced Azmy to seven years in prison and a fine of LE36.367 million, ordering a retrial.

In 2015, President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi approved the illicit gain laws which allow people to give back illegally seized funds in return for the charges being dropped.

The court’s decision comes at a time when the Swiss government is freezing assets of Mubarak era figures, Azmi being one of them.

The Swiss Attorney-General Michael Lauber said in December that these assets amounted to a total of 529 million euros (LE8.8 billion).

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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