Egypt‘s feared former interior minister was acquitted on corruption charges on Thursday and will be released from detention pending a retrial.
Habib el-Adly was sentenced to seven years in prison for embezzling $110m of public funds after being convicted in April 2017.
After his conviction, he disappeared and Egypt’s interior ministry declared him a fugitive. He was arrested in December after turning himself over to authorities.
Egypt’s Court of Cassation – the country’s highest appeals court – overturned the corruption verdict because of procedural errors and ordered a retrial. He did not attend Thursday’s hearing, Ahram Online reported.
Adly and two other interior ministry officials had been ordered to refund $110m and were fined the same amount, Reuters news agency reported.
Adly was Egypt’s top security official under former President Hosni Mubarak, from 1997 until the regime’s fall during the Arab Spring in 2011.
He developed a notorious reputation for torture, forced disappearances, and other human rights abuses.
Adly has also faced a string of criminal cases against him since the 2011 uprising that removed Mubarak, but had been cleared.
He was accused of ordering security forces to open fire on protesters demanding the regime’s overthrow as the Arab Spring erupted in January 2011.
Mubarak and Adly were acquitted, in 2014, of charges that they were responsible for killing hundreds of protesters during the 18-day uprising.