Cairo Criminal Court decided Tuesday morning to postpone to 13 July the trial of 67 defendants who are accused of being responsible for the assassination of late prosecutor-general Hisham Barakat.
The decision was released following the first session of the trial that was held at the same court and witnessed the attendance of 51 defendants, while the other 16 were tried in absentia, according to state-run newspaper Akhabr Al-Youm.
Defendants are facing several charges that include establishing an illegal group, executing hostile operations against judges, army, and police officers, as well as targeting diplomatic headquarters and aiming to destroy state institutions. The memorandum added that terrorism was used by the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood to execute the aforementioned charges.
The prosecution also addressed charges of financing members of the Brotherhood through buying cars to be used in terrorist attacks and helping them escape Egypt through southern borders, according to state-run newspaper Akhabr Al-Youm.
Earlier, current prosecutor-general Nabil Sadek referred the aforementioned 67 defendants to criminal trial following the end of investigations executed by a high state security apparatus. The investigations revealed that defendants in the case are Brotherhood affiliated and were cooperating with the Palestinian movement Hamas.
Investigations revealed that defendants collaborated with Hamas and a number of Brotherhood leaders to prepare operations targeting a number of Egyptian state figures with the aim of creating a state of chaos and destroying state institutions, clarified Akhbar Al-Youm.
Furthermore, investigations revealed that the defendants were responsible for providing weapons, bombs, military clothes, and equipment to Brotherhood members for the sake of executing terrorist attacks and for facilitating military training to Brotherhood members through an agreement held with Hamas intelligence officers to provide military training to the group responsible for assassinating Barakat.
Barakat was assassinated on 29 June 2015 in an attack that targeted his motorcade. He died shortly after being moved to a hospital.
The attack was first claimed by the Giza Popular Resistance militant group on their Facebook page, though the claim was later revoked. Two months later, a group calling itself Tahrir Brigades, which has no known record of activity, claimed responsibility for the assassination. No evidence for either claim was provided.
Sadek was appointed by President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi as Egypt’s new prosecutor-general in September 2015.
A media gag is being imposed on the investigations into the case of the assassination.