Egypt unfreezes assets of 10 Mubarak-era officials

Cairo, Jan 14: Egypt’s Prosecutor-General Talat Ibrahim Abdullah Monday decided to lift an asset freeze imposed on 10 officials who worked during the rule of then president Hosni Mubarak, the official MENA news agency reported.

The former officials accused of taking gifts from the state-run al-Ahram Press Foundation include former speaker of the People’s Assembly or lower house of parliament, Ahmed Fathi Sorour, former minister of legal affairs and parliamentary councils Mofeed Shehab, and Mubarak’s secretary Abul Wafaa Rashwan.

The prosecutor-general’s decision came after the officials paid the value of the received gifts in cash. He also decided to lift a travel ban imposed on them.

Investigations revealed that the officials received gifts, such as golden pens, watches, gold coins, jewellery and diamond sets, estimated at 100 million Egyptian pounds (about $15 million), from al-Ahram during 1984-2011.

In December 2012, the prosecutor-general imposed a travel ban on 26 former government figures, including Mubarak, his wife Suzanne Thabet, his two sons and their wives, as well as the 10 officials.

The prosecution has also questioned Mubarak over gifts worth over $1 million he allegedly received every year from state-run al-Ahram newspaper from 2006 to 2011.

IANS