Egypt Independent

Khaled Saeed case postponed until end of June



The Alexandria Criminal Court decided Saturday to postpone until 30 June the sentencing of the police officers from Sidi Gaber police station who are accused of killing Khaled Saeed.

Mahmoud Salah and Awad Ismail are accused of taking the 28-year-old by force from an internet cafe in Alexandria and beating him to death in June 2010.

The court which issued the decision included judges Amr Abbas and Abdel Azim al-Beih, and was headed by judge Moussa al-Nahrawi.

The court had heard the arguments of the defendants' and plaintiff's lawyers over six sessions, as well as the testimonies of civil rights lawyers and forensic pathologists.

In the seventh session on Saturday, the court heard defendants' lawyers, who questioned the testimonies of prosecution witnesses, particularly that of the cybercafe's owner and his son Haitham, a friend of the victim.

They said that these witnesses knew details listed in the prosecution report, which suggests that they built their testimony upon the report. They pointed also to the testimony of a pharmacist, who denied that he was in a cafe when the incident took place and denied carrying out any medical examination of Saeed. 

The defendants' lawyers reported that the pharmacist said he was passing by, witnessed a crowd, tried to see Saeed, and that when he reached him he was nearly dead.

A civil rights lawyer, meanwhile, questioned the bag of drugs the forensic report said Saeed swallowed to hide from police, suffocating as a result. The bag appeared fragmented but the report said it measured 2.5cm by 7.5cm.

The defendants' lawyer responded that the fragmentation was due to "erosion factors".

Saeed's lawyers questioned reports prepared under the supervision of former forensics chief Al-Sebaie Ahmed al-Sebaie, and demanded a committee of professors from the faculty of medicine be appointed to review them.

Outside the court nearly 200 activists denounced the Ministry of Interior and demanded that the killers be brought to justice.

Tight security measures included tanks surrounding the court from the early hours of the day, and the Corniche was closed for the duration of the trial.

Translated from the Arabic Edition