Cairo, July 5 (IANS) An Egyptian court on Thursday sentenced 21 loyalists of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group from 10 to 25 years in prison over forming a terrorist cell targeting policemen, soldiers and judges.
Cairo Criminal Court sentenced 14 defendants to 25 years in jail, six to 15 years and one to 10 years, according to Efe news. Eight of the 14 defendants sentenced to 25 years were fugitives while the other 13 had been tried in custody.
Among the defendants in custody was Abdullah Shehata, the economic adviser of former Brotherhood-oriented President Mohamed Morsi who was ousted by the Army in July 2013 in response to mass protests against his one-year rule.
The court said the defendants were convicted of possessing machine guns, ammunition and explosives used to carry out their terrorist activities and harm social peace and national unity.
Most Brotherhood leaders, members and supporters, including Morsi himself and the group’s top chief Mohamed Badie, are currently jailed. Many of them have received appealable death sentences and life imprisonments over various charges varying from inciting violence and murder to espionage and jailbreak.
Morsi is currently serving a 20-year prison sentence over inciting deadly clashes between his supporters and opponents in late 2012 and a 25-year jail term over leaking classified documents to Qatar.
Since Morsi’s ouster, Egypt has been facing a wave of terror attacks that killed hundreds of policemen, soldiers as well as civilians.