Mubarak trial resumes, live TV broadcasts to end

[JURIST] The corruption and murder trial of former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak [Al Jazeera profile; JURIST news archive] resumed on Monday. Mubarak is on trial for murder, attempted killing of protesters and other charges related to general abuse of power [Al Jazeera report] stemming from his response to pro-democracy demonstrations in Egypt [JURIST news archive] earlier this year. Presiding Judge Ahmed Rifaat decided to end live TV broadcasts [AP report] of subsequent proceedings amid protests from the families of victims and praise from several courtroom lawyers who opposed the broadcasts. Mubarak's sons Gamal and Alaa, who are also on trial for corruption charges, were present [AP report] in the defendants' cage on Monday. Rifaat ultimately adjourned the trial until September 5 when other officials are scheduled to face charges related to killing protestors.

Mubarak's trial began on August 3 [JURIST report] with Mubarak and his sons pleading not guilty to all charges. Officials chose a new location for Mubarak's trial for security reasons after reporting [JURIST reports] that the trial would take place at a convention center in downtown Cairo. The announcement came amid speculation [Reuters report] that the trial would take place at a Red Sea resort because of Mubarak's alleged poor health. Many Egyptians contend that Mubarak is not ill and that members of the government have claimed the ex-president is sick in an effort to avoid a swift, public trial. In July, an Egyptian criminal court postponed the trial [JURIST report] of former interior minister Habib el-Adly, who also faces murder charges in relation to the pro-democracy demonstrations, so it would coincide with Mubarak's trial. In March, a commission of Arab and Egyptian human rights groups accused Mubarak [JURIST report] and the police of murdering protesters during the demonstrations in Egypt. Mubarak could face the death penalty [JURIST report] if convicted of ordering attacks on protesters. Amnesty International (AI) [advocacy website] reported that at least 840 people were killed [JURIST report] and more than 6,000 injured during the Egyptian protests.

 

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