Egypt: top prosecutor killed in car bomb attack

Egypt's chief prosecutor, Hisham Barakat, was killed June 29 in Cairo by a car-bomb attack on his convoy. Barakat's vehicle was attacked by a car outfitted with explosives that was remotely detonated when his motorcade left his home in Heliopolis. The prosecutor's death marks the country's first assassination of a senior official in 25 years, and seems to be the result of retribution attempts by Islamic militants in response to the crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood. It is believed that Barakat became a target as a result of his role as prosecutor against many Brotherhood members and other Islamists, including former President Mohammed Morsi. An militant group calling itself "Popular Resistance in Giza" claimed responsibility for the remote detonation of the car bomb. While the authorities suspect the Brotherhood for the attack, the organization has denied all involvement.

From Jurist, June 30. Used with permission.

  1. Egypt high court upholds conviction of chief prosecutor’s killer

    The Egyptian Court of Cassation, the country's highest appellate court, on Nov. 19 upheld the conviction of nine individuals for their involvement in the assassination of Hisham Barakat, the country's chief prosecutor. Barakat was killed in 2015 after his vehicle convoy was struck by a car bomb in the streets of Cairo. Barakat remains the most senior government official killed by militants in the country since the 2013 Egyptian coup.

    The lower criminal court sentenced a total of 28 defendants to death in connection to the assassination. An additional 15 defendants were sentenced to life in prison, eight were sentenced to 15 years of imprisonment, and yet another 15 were sentenced to 10 years of imprisonment. Of these defendants, a total of 13 were tried in absentia as law enforcement officials were not able to locate them in order for them to stand trial. Those who were tried in their absence will be entitled to a new trial if they are ever located and apprehended by law enforcement. (Jurist)