Egypt’s top court upholds 15-year-sentence for activist

July 4, 2020 GMT

CAIRO (AP) — Egypt’s highest criminal court Saturday upheld a 15-year sentence for one of the leading activists behind the country’s 2011 uprising who was convicted of taking part in clashes between protesters and security forces.

The Court of Cassation also confirmed a fine of 6 million Egyptian pounds, or $372,000, against Ahmed Douma, a secular activist, over the same violence-related charges.

Douma was one of 230 people sentenced in 2015 by the Cairo Criminal Court to life in prison. All defendants were tried in absentia except Douma, who was serving a three-year-sentence for breaking a draconian law regulating protests.


Douma appealed the life sentence and the Court of Cassation ordered his retrial, ultimately leading to the reduced sentence of 15 years.

Saturday’s verdict is final.

The case concerns clashes in Cairo in December 2011, during which a fire gutted parts of a library housing rare manuscripts and books. Other government buildings, including the parliament, were damaged during the protests.

The nearly weeklong clashes that left some 40 people dead erupted after mostly young activists took to the streets to protest the post-Mubarak political transition overseen by the military. The clashes brought international attention when riot police were filmed beating, stripping and kicking female demonstrators in Tahrir Square.