New evidence presented in trial of bishop Epiphanius' murderers

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Fri, 01 Feb 2019 - 09:54 GMT

FILE- Pope Tawadros II in the Bishop Epiphanius’s funeral - press photo

FILE- Pope Tawadros II in the Bishop Epiphanius’s funeral - press photo

CAIRO - 1 February 2019: The lawyer of one of the two former monks accused of killing head of St. Macarius Monastery in Wadi El-Natroun presented videos and pictures related to the incident allegedly proving that the metal tube seized by the police cannot be the murder weapon.

The pictures and videos sent by one of the monastery's monks showed that part of the victim's brain was out after he was hit, which cannot be caused by the metal tube believed to be used to kill Bishop Epiphanius, the defense team said.

Ehab Sedra, lawyer of former monk Faltaous al-Makary added that two people from outside the monastery murdered the bishop using two different tools, the lawyer asserted, El Watan reported.

"Is it [possible] that 75 monks inside the monastery, staying in [rooms] located in the corridor which the monastery's head passes by [on his way] to the church that [lies] inside the monastery, and none of them saw the incident?" Sedra asked.

The lawyer asked for calling a forensic doctor to give his opinion after the new evidence was revealed to the court. He added that, before the court, the opinions of the two forensic doctors regarding the possibility that the seized tool allegedly used in the murder could cause such injury to the victim were contradictory.

Sedra said that five people inside the monastery, who had disputes with the late monk, were suspects, while only two of them were indicted.

Damanhour Criminal Court adjourned the trial of expelled monk Ash’eyaa, whose birth name is Wael Saad, and Monk Faltaous al-Makary, whose birth name is Raymond Rasmi Mansour, to February 23, over charges of the deliberate murder of Bishop Epiphanius.

Bishop Epiphanius was found dead on July 29 inside the monastery. The two detained monks reportedly confessed their crime. However, during an earlier session, Ash’eyaa denied committing the crime.

Following the death of Bishiop Epiphanius, Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria issued new monasticism laws, topping which is the deactivation of the social media accounts of all monks and bishops.

The death of Bishop Epiphanius revealed the struggle between the school of late Pope Shenouda and the ecclesiastical school of late Mathew the poor.

“We should look at it [the incident of the murder] as a wake-up call for all of us... the death of Bishop Epiphanius was like an alarm call,” said the pope during a mass marking the 40th day of the bishop’s death.

Monk Faltaous tried to commit suicide via slitting his wrist and then jumping off a high building inside the monastery. On August 21, he was hospitalized due to a degraded case of gangrene in his leg. Also, Ash’eyaa tried to commit suicide a day after the murder.

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