Steel magnate trial postponed to October

The Giza Criminal Court on Thursday postponed the trial of former steel magnate Ahmed Ezz to 1 October.

Six others are also implicated in the case, including former Minister of Industry Ibrahim Mohamedein.

In the session, the court heard the testimonies of two foreign experts who work in international steel companies, on the request of Farid al-Deeb, Ezz's lawyer.

On Wednesday, Ezz addressed the court to deny accusations that he abused his position at the National Democratic Party.

The case centers on charges that Ezz, Mohamedein and five company officials acquired the shares of Dekheila Steel in an unlawful way. Ezz, Mohamedein and the other defendants were referred to court in June 2011 on charges of profiteering and squandering around LE5 billion in public funds. The prosecution has demanded the maximum penalty for all defendants.

Investigations alleged that Mohamedein had enabled Ezz to seize shares at the formerly state-owned Ezz Dekheila Steel Company from 1999 to 2001. The prosecutors accuse Ezz of making illegal profits worth LE687.44 million from the shares, while making a further LE4.82 billion in illegal profits from 2001 to 2011.

Ezz was arrested 24 February 2011 following the resignation of former President Hosni Mubarak. Ezz was a business tycoon and close associate of Gamal Mubarak, son of the deposed president.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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