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Egyptian Ex-Finance Minister, Yussef Boutros Ghali, Gets 30 Years in Absentia  

04 June 2011 - 14H03

France 24, AFP -

Former Egyptian finance minister Yussef Boutros Ghali was on Saturday sentenced to 30 years in prison in absentia on corruption charges, an AFP correspondent said.

Judge Magdi Ghoneim of the Cairo criminal court sentenced Ghali to 15 years for squandering public money by using cars held in customs and 15 years for abusing his position to personally benefit from ministry funds.

Ghali, who is out of the country, is one of a string of ministers of ousted president Hosni Mubarak's regime to face charges as part of a sweeping probe into fraud by the country's new military rulers.

Egypts put 48 on trial for sectarian violence


Egypt's public prosecutor on Saturday referred 48 people to trial for their involvement in deadly Muslim-Christian clashes last month.

The 48 accused were referred to Cairo's supreme state security court for "premeditated murder, harming public security, inciting sectarian tension, burning a church and possessing weapons with the purpose of carrying out terror (acts)," the prosecutor's office said.

Fierce clashes broke out on May 7 between Christians and Muslims in northwest Cairo's working-class district of Imbaba where 12 people were killed, scores injured and a church set ablaze, according to court figures.

The National Council for Human Rights had put the death toll at 15.

Of the 48 accused, 22 are in preventative detention and the search continues for the remaining 26, the prosecutor said.

Egypt has been gripped by insecurity and sectarian strife since a revolt that toppled president Hosni Mubarak on February 11.

Coptic Christians, who account for up to 10 percent of Egypt's 80-million people, complain of discrimination and have been the targets of sectarian attacks.

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