Egypt’s military admits sentencing four–year old wrongly

Egypt’s military admits sentencing four–year old wrongly

- The Egyptian army had disclosed that it wrongly sentenced a four-year-old boy last year, to life in prison

- The spokesperson for the military say the sentence was meant for a 16-year-old boy rather-

- The four-year-old boy's lawyer said the judge failed to consider the birth certificate produced at the trial

- The spokesperson took to Facebook to make the announcement

Egypt’s military admits sentencing four–year old wrongly

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An Egyptian military court has acknowledged it made a mistake by sentencing a four-year-old boy to life in prison for murder last week.

Spokesman Col Mohammed Samir said the sentence was meant for a 16-year-old with a similar name instead.

Ahmed Mansour Qurani Ali was convicted along with 115 others in connection with riots by Muslim Brotherhood supporters in Fayoum province in 2014. His lawyer had submitted documents proving that he was one at the time.

The child's lawyer said his name had been added to the list of suspects by mistake and that court officials had not passed his birth certificate to the judge to prove his age at the time of the offence. He was subsequently convicted of four counts of murder, eight counts of attempted murder and vandalising government property.

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In a post on Facebook (in Arabic), Col Samir said Ahmed Mansour Qurani Sharara, 16, should have been sentenced and not Ahmed Mansour Qurani Ali. It not clear what will now happen to the four year old?

Egypt's judicial system has come under repeated criticism since the military overthrew President Mohammed Morsi in 2013, following mass protests.

More than 1,000 people have been killed and 40,000 are believed to have been jailed in a sweeping crackdown on dissent. Most of  the dead  were supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood, but secular activists have also been prosecuted for breaking an anti-protest law.

In 2014, the UN warned that Egypt had "a judicial system where international fair trial guarantees appear to be increasingly trampled upon" after more than 1,200 people were sentenced to death in two mass trials "rife with procedural irregularities".

 

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