The Middle East News Agency (MENA) reported on Tuesday that Egypt’s Prosecutor General, Talaat Abdullah, has made a formal request to INTERPOL for the arrest and handover of former presidential candidate, Ahmed Shafiq. Egypt is seeking his arrest after his case was referred to a criminal court on corruption charges.
The agency quoted the prosecutor’s official spokesperson, Mustafa Dowidar, as saying “This decision was made in relation to Shafiq’s referral for criminal prosecution by the investigating magistrate who was assigned by the Minister of Justice in the case concerning the Cooperative Housing Association for Military Pilots.”
Criminal justice sources in Egypt told AFP that the judge issued an order to refer Ahmed Shafiq for criminal prosecution on charges of embezzling public funds and profiteering in what became known as the “pilots housing.”
Shafiq, his three daughters, and 10 other officials face charges of illegal seizure of land owned by the Cooperative Housing Association for Military Pilots in the Suez Canal area, when it was headed by the former presidential candidate.
Additionally, Shafiq and another Association board member also face money laundering charges amounting to five million Egyptian pounds ($740,000 US).
Shafiq, the last Prime Minister during Mubarak’s reign, was referred to a criminal court twice in the past for crimes relating to financial and administrative corruption in the civil aviation sector and another corruption case relating to the illegal transfer of state land to Ala’a and Jamal Mubarak.
Yesterday’s ruling included a petition to the Emirati authorities to handover Shafiq to Egypt. However, Egypt and the UAE have no extradition agreement.
Shafiq has been residing in the UAE since his defeat in the Egyptian presidential elections to Dr Mohammad Morsi, last June.
Last October, the Egyptian Ministry of Justice froze Shafiq’s assets as well as that of his three daughters. The ruling was, however, overturned by the Criminal Court in December.