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Egypt sentences 9 to death over prosecutor's death

Egyptian defendants accused of forming a militant cell that assassinated state prosecutor Hisham Barakat in 2015 sit behind bars on June 17, 2017, during a court hearing in the capital Cairo [KHALED KAMEL/AFP/Getty Images]
Egyptian defendants accused of forming a militant cell that assassinated state prosecutor Hisham Barakat in 2015 sit behind bars on June 17, 2017, during a court hearing in the capital Cairo [KHALED KAMEL/AFP/Getty Images]

Egypt's highest appellate court on Sunday upheld the death sentence against nine people over the 2015 killing of the country's prosecutor-general.

The Court of Cassation confirmed the penalty after being convicted in the death of Hisham Barakat, who was killed in a car bombing in eastern Cairo, according to the official MENA news agency.

The son of senior Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Taha Wahdan was among those condemned to death, as was Ahmad Wahdan, whose daughter Laila has just been expelled from nursery in Ismailia due to previous charges against him.

Wahdan was forcibly disappeared in February 2016 then taken to the notorious Scorpion wing within Tora Prison where he has since been held.

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The court also commuted the death sentence against six other defendants to life in prison.

Egypt was roiled by turmoil when the military deposed Mohamed Morsi, the country's first freely elected president, in a 2013 coup.

Barakat was the highest Egyptian official to have been killed in a militant attack since 2013.

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