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Chaotic scenes as Mubarak jailed for life
From: cnn          Published On: August 2, 2012, 11:56 GMT
 
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Chaotic scenes as Mubarak jailed for life

Mubarak refused to leave the helicopter on arrival at the prison.


Deposed Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak was transferred to a prison near Cairo on Saturday to serve his life sentence, a prosecutor said, a final fall from grace for a man who ruled the nation with an iron fist for nearly three decades.

"Mubarak arrived to Tura prison by helicopter, and will be admitted to a hospital in prison," said Adel Saeed, a spokesman for the prosecutor. A spokesman for the Interior Ministry said Mubarak refused to leave the helicopter on arrival at the prison.

Mubarak received a life sentence Saturday for his role in the killing of demonstrators during last year's protests calling for his ouster. About 840 people died and more than 6,000 others were injured in the 18-day uprising, according to Amnesty International.

His sentence sparked angry protests as victims' relatives and opponents disrupted proceedings inside the court. Others stood on chairs, raising fists in the air and chanting that the sentence was not enough.

As police restrained people throwing punches inside the court, clashes broke out as supporters and opponents scuffled with security forces outside.

"People want the execution of Mubarak," some chanted. Others yelled, ' "illegitimate, illegitimate verdict." '

The sentence handed down by Judge Ahmed Refaat was the final chapter of Mubarak's three decade, iron rule of Egypt that ended in February 2011.

Handing down the verdict before a packed courtroom, the judge praised the revolution, saying it offered people relief after living "in 30 years of dark without any hope."

He found Mubarak guilty of the killings, but cleared him of corruption and misappropriation of funds.

The judge also convicted former Interior Minister Habib El Adly of ordering security forces to kill protesters and sentenced him to life in prison.

The courtroom melee erupted after the judge cleared six of Mubarak's aides, primarily security officials, in connection with the killing of demonstrators. Authorities removed Mubarak and the judge from the courtroom amid the outburst

He also cleared Mubarak's sons -- Gamal and Alaa -- of corruption and using their father's political power for profit.

"The verdicts are insults to the Egyptian people and the judicial system. It's a festival of innocent verdicts to El Adly's aides who killed and tortured free citizens for years," said Rami Shath, a member of the Egyptian Revolution Alliance.

The trial has been a spectacle few Egyptians thought they would see. Images broadcast worldwide showed the 84-year-old former leader wheeled into the court on a hospital gurney and locked in a defendant's cage.

It was marked by chaos inside and outside the heavily-guarded courtroom, with confrontations between prosecutors and defense attorneys, and clashes between protesters and police.

The verdict follows Friday's expiration of a notorious emergency law that ended 31 years of sweeping police powers. It comes ahead of a polarizing mid-June runoff in the presidential election that pits the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohamed Morsi against the more secularist Ahmed Shafiq, a former official in Mubarak's regime.

Mubarak became president in October 1981, ruling Egypt with an iron hand as a staunch ally of the United States.


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