Giza Criminal Court on Wednesday acquitted dozens of senior intelligence officers accused of ordering the destruction of state documents in the wake of the 25 January revolution.
The defendants in the case stand accused of burning and destroying State Security Investigation Services (SSIS) documents.
Former chief of the now-dissolved SSIS, Hassan Abdel Rahman, and 40 other suspects have been implicated in the case. A gagging order had previously been issued for coverage of proceedings.
In its final statement before the court, the defence argued that defendants actually protected their country through their actions during the revolution, even going so far as to dub them "heroes."
In March 2011, hundreds of civilians broke into the SSIS facilities in Cairo and other governorates following reports that its officers had been disposing of documents believed to constitute evidence of corruption and torture.
Some citizens seized documents and handed them over to investigators.
The SSIS, Egypt’s much-feared and despised security agency, was an important prop for former President Hosni Mubarak's regime in suppressing activism and dissent. Among other charges, the agency stood accused of torturing political detainees.
Egypt’s former Interior Minister Mansour al-Essawy disbanded the agency in March 2011, replacing it with what is now known as the National Security Agency.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm