World Bulletin/News Desk
A criminal court in the central Egyptian province of Minya on Sunday handed life sentences [25 years of imprisonment] to three backers of ousted president Mohamed Morsi after convicting them of violence-related charges, a judicial source said.
The source said the court had convicted the three Morsi backers of involvement in riots that took place in Matai, a town of the central province, following the violent dispersal in August of last year of two major sit-ins staged by Morsi supporters in Cairo and Giza.
The court had accused the three men of joining a outlawed movement, namely the Muslim Brotherhood, the movement from which Morsi hails which was also designated a "terrorist" movement by authorities late last year, the judicial source said.
He said the same court had also adjourned until Monday the trial of three other Muslim Brotherhood members, including two who were previously sentenced to 28 years in jail for involvement in riots in Samalout - another town in Minya - following the two sit-ins dispersal.
The same court had, meanwhile, adjourned until December 15 the retrial of 150 Morsi-backers accused of involvement in violence in Matai as well.
A total of 545 Morsi supporters were accused of attacking the Matai police station and killing the police chief inside following the dispersal of the two sit-ins in Cairo and Giza on August 14 last year.
On April 28, the court sentenced 37 defendants to death and handed 491 others life sentences, whereas 17 defendants were cleared.
Most of the defendants were tried in absentia.
The authorities in Egypt have been accusing the Muslim Brotherhood of standing behind a series of terrorist attacks that targeted the country's security sites since Morsi's ouster on July 3 last year.
Morsi was ousted by the military following mass protests against his one-year rule.
Thousands of his backers and movement members have ever since been thrown in jail and accused of involvement in violence, murder and attacking police facilities.
The Brotherhood, for its part, emphatically denies the allegations and accuses the authorities of making politically-motivated arrests.
Güncelleme Tarihi: 09 Kasım 2014, 17:04