Taher Mokhtar and housemates’ detention renewed for 15 days

Abdeen Court renewed the detention of doctor and activist Taher Mokhtar and his two roommates, Ahmed Hassan and Ahmed Hossam, for 15 days pending investigation into charges of the possession of printed material allegedly calling for the overthrow of the government.

A lawyer on Mokhtar’s defense team, Malek Adly, said the defendants haven’t been charged with participating in the January 25 revolution, but that Mokhtar has been accused of participating in violent clashes following “the January events.”

Mokhtar is a member of the Doctors Syndicate’s freedom committee.

Personnel from Qasr al-Nil Police Station and the National Security Agency searched Mokhtar’s home on Thursday before arresting him and his two housemates, as well as the building’s doorman.

On Friday, Abdeen prosecution ordered their detention for four days pending investigations.

Adly told Mada Masr the defense team has appealed the defendants’ detention at Abdeen Misdemeanor Appeals Court. He added that authorities had refused to include a report submitted by the Doctors Syndicate stating that Mokhtar was tasked with investigating prisoners’ health conditions by the syndicate, which he said explains why a report on prisoners health was at his home address.

“Their arrest comes merely as part of a trend in using detention pending investigation as punishment in itself,” he said.

Adly said the search warrant issued by National Security for Mokhtar’s house indicated that he keeps weapons at his home, none of which were found during the search. Mokhtar was still arrested for possession of “prohibitions,” Adly reported.

Security forces seized three mobile phones, a laptop, documents asserting, “medical negligence in prisons is a crime,” and others containing protest slogans, such as “peaceful” and “military coup.”

Security has been tight in the lead-up to the fifth anniversary of the January 25 revolution. At the end of December, security forces arrested a group of political activists, including Mohamed Nabil, Sherif Ali, Ayman Osama, Mahmoud Hashem and Sherif al-Rouby, all members of the banned April 6 Youth Movement. 

Lawyer Mokhtar Mounir previously relayed to Mada Masr that an officer with Abdeen Police Station told him the raid on Mokhtar’s house was just a “precautionary measure before the January 25 anniversary.”

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