Former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak [Al Jazeera profile; JURIST news archive] was ordered by the prosecutor's office on Wednesday to return to prison from the military hospital where he was staying after he appeared healthy at a hearing [JURIST report] on Monday. Also on Wednesday, a Cairo Court of Appeals announced that Mubarak's retrial for complicity in the killing of protesters would begin on May 11 [Al Jazeera report]. A retrial was ordered after Mubarak's initial life in prison sentence [JURIST report] was overturned [JURIST report] in January. Mubarak was ordered to be released in the hearing on Monday, as he served the maximum two years in temporary detention, but was kept in custody on charges of fraud. The release of Mubarak was ordered after the judge set to preside over Mubarak's retrial recused himself [JURIST report] days earlier, further delaying the justice process and aggravating citizens who are already suspicious of the justice system.
Mubarak and members of his former government have been the subject of controversial judicial proceedings since the start of the Egyptian Revolution [JURIST backgrounder] in 2011. In February an Egyptian court ordered the release [JURIST report] of Mubarak's former chief of staff. In January an Egyptian appeals judge overturned Mubarak's conviction [JURIST report] and life sentence and ordered a retrial for the former president on the charge of failure to prevent the killing of more than 800 protesters in 2012. Also in January former culture minister Farouq Hosni was acquitted of charges [JURIST report] of corruption and illegal enrichment. Last August the former secretary for the Mubarak's political party, Safwat El-Sherif, was referred to a criminal court [JURIST report] for abusing his office by obtaining real estates at discounted prices and illegally obtaining $49.2 million. In July an Egyptian court rejected pleas to release [JURIST report] Mubarak's two sons while they await trial, although their lawyer argued they were detained unlawfully for longer than permissible under Egyptian law. Gamal and Alaa Mubarak, along with seven others, were charged [JURIST report] with stock market fraud, using unfair trading practices and illegally manipulating the market.