CAIRO - 2 April 2019: Egypt's Supreme Military Court of Appeals upheld the execution of three defendants accused of involvement in the assassination of Colonel Wael Tahoun in 2015, amid escalated attacks against security personnel since the dispersal of the pro-Muslim Brotherhood Rabaa Sit-in in August, 2013.
Tahoun, a public security officer, had served as the former head of investigations at Cairo's Matariya Police Station. Reportedly, two masked men on a motorbike shot Tahoun dead along with his driver, a conscript, in Cairo's Ain Shams.
The sentences against the three defendants were upheld, after the court rejected their appeals, while it decided to accept the appeal filed by a fourth defendant, and commute his death sentence to life imprisonment. This comes as part of a verdict issued in January, 2018, sentencing to death 8 people including 4 in absentia, over killing the police officer.
The court also upheld the life imprisonment issued earlier against some defendants in the case, including prominent scholar Yusuf al-Qaradawi, former head of the Doha-based International Union of Muslim Scholars, who Egypt has designated as terrorist. Qaradawi, 92, was removed from the Interpol's wanted list in December last year.
Moreover, the remaining defendants were acquitted of charges earlier, while the case against Mohamed Kamal, a Muslim Brotherhood leader, was abated after he was killed in a firefight with security forces in Cairo in 2016, according to the Egyptian Interior Ministry.
In this case, Qaradawi, along with Abdel Rahman al-Bar, Muslim Brotherhood's Mufti, and other defendants face charges of assassinating Tahoun, forming armed cells that included members of the Brotherhood and others loyal to the group, to carry out hostile acts against judges, members of armed forces, police personnel and public installations.
Egypt has designated the Muslim Brotherhood group as terrorist since December, 2013, few months after the ousting of Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated former President Mohamed Morsi, followed by the dispersal of pro-MB mass protests.