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Trial of former Egypt interior minister delayed

An Egyptian criminal court on Monday postponed the trial of former interior minister Habib el-Adly until August 3. El-Adly and Egypt's former president Hosni Mubarak [Al Jazeera profile; JURIST news archive] face charges of killing pro-democracy protesters during the demonstrations in Egypt [JURIST news archive] earlier this year. Six of el-Adly's former assistants are also charged with murdering demonstrators [CNN report]. The trial date for Mubarak was set for August 3 at the Cairo Criminal Court [MENA report; JURIST report]. Pursuant to the postponement order, both men are slated to stand trial on the same day.

El-Adly, who was already serving a 12-year prison sentence, was sentenced to five years [JURIST report] in July on corruption charges. Former finance minister Yousef Boutros and former prime minister Ahmed Nazif, along with el-Adly, were ordered to return USD $15 million for a no-bid contract, while Boutros and el-Adly were also fined nearly USD $17 million. In March, a commission of Arab and Egyptian human rights groups accused Mubarak [JURIST report] and the police of murdering protesters during the demonstrations in Egypt. Mubarak could face the death penalty [JURIST report] if convicted of ordering attacks on protesters, and el-Adly's testimony could help prove Mubarak was an accomplice to the killings. Amnesty International (AI) [advocacy website] reported that at least 840 people were killed [JURIST report], and more than 6,000 were injured, during the Egyptian protests.

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