In the midst of a string of arrests of activists, media and cultural figures, it’s gotten a little difficult to keep track of who is and is not currently detained in the interest of Egypt’s national security. With the list of the former apparently growing by the hour, here is a helpful guide to some of the people who are currently free to walk the streets of Egypt.
Notorious Mubarak-era Interior Minister Habib El Adly was released from prison in March 2015, after spending four years in detention awaiting trial on charges ranging from mass killings of anti-Mubarak protestors to misappropriation of hundreds of millions of pounds of public funds. The only charge that actually stuck pertained to exploiting conscript labor to build his personal villa, for which he was sentenced to three years. With no outstanding convictions, Adly was cleared for release on March 25, although he does still face one last round of illicit gains charges, for which proceedings began in August. In December, the Ministry of Justice ordered that Adly’s assets be unfrozen.
The final batch of police officers accused of killing protesters during the January 25 uprising were acquitted in February 2014. According to an EIPR study, only two low-ranking policemen were ever imprisoned for killing protesters — and those five-year sentences should expire soon. An additional five officers were sentenced in absentia, and 13 received suspended sentences.
Egypt’s government admitted that more than 800 protesters were killed during the 2011 uprising, but security forces proved reluctant to gather evidence against themselves, leading to failed prosecutions. These acquittals, in turn, undermined cases against high officials like Hosni Mubarak and Habib El Adly, leaving them to be tried only for lesser, financial crimes.
Nobody at all has been held accountable for 2013 killings of more than 800 protesters in Rabea al-Adaweya and Nahda squares. Mohamed Ibrahim, who was interior minister at the time, remained in his post until March 2015, and still serves as a government advisor. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who led the Armed Forces at the time, is currently Egypt’s president.
Hosni Mubarak’s sons have had a bit of a rollercoaster of a year. After almost four years in prison, Gamal and Alaa were released from Tora prison in January 2015 following the successful appeal of corruption charges against them and their father in the “Mubarak Mansions” case. After a retrial, they were convicted again in May, and sentenced to three years each for their part in embezzling over LE100 million. In October, they successfully petitioned to be released as their time served in prison had covered their three-year sentences. However, the two still face separate charges of illicit gains and insider trading. That trial has been delayed repeatedly, but is currently scheduled to resume in March.
Billionaire steel tycoon and National Democratic Party parliamentarian Ahmed Ezz was viewed by many as emblematic of the excesses and corruption of the business elite that surrounded Hosni Mubarak. He was arrested just days after Mubarak stepped down, and sentenced to six decades in prison a series of cases relating to the illegal acquisition of steel licenses, profiteering, money laundering and monopolistic business practices. By August 2014, he had successfully appealed or reached financial settlements in all of those cases, and was cleared to be released on bail. Ezz even attempted to run for this year’s parliamentary elections, but was finally disqualified after a series of appeals.
Although relatively unique for the amount of time he actually spent in prison, Ezz’s fate is in line with the fortunes of other members of Mubarak’s inner circle who initially faced long prison terms but were acquitted on retrail, paid settlements or negotiated suspended sentences. This list includes people like former Housing Minister Ahmed al-Maghrabi, Tourism Minister Zoheir Garana, Information Minister Anas al-Fiqqi, Housing Minister Ahmed al-Maghrabi, rime Minister Ahmed Nazif. Other tycoons with close ties to Mubarak, such as Hussein Salem, Rachid Mohammed Rachid and Youssef Boutros-Ghali were sentenced in absentia but are safe and free outside of Egypt.
In a January 2015 verdict that was hailed as a “monumental victory” in the fight against female genital mutilation in Egypt, doctor Raslan Fadl was convicted for manslaughter and illegally performing FGM after a botched operation killed a 13-year-old girl. Fadl was the first doctor convicted since Egypt’s anti-FGM law was passed in 2008.
The sentence was never carried out, and police say Fadl remains a wanted fugitive. However, in early December a reporter for NPR was able to easily locate Fadl, who is working at a government-run hospital in the Nile Delta.