ROME: The trial of 4 Egyptian safety officers in Rome for the brutal killing of Italian pupil Giulio Regeni 5 years in the past was thrown out by judges Thursday, “bitterly” disappointing his household which vowed not to surrender on the case.
The judges dominated that the 4 couldn’t be tried in absentia as a result of prosecutors had been unable to formally inform them of the judicial course of towards them, a court-appointed defence lawyer informed AFP.
The officers stand accused of kidnapping, conspiracy to homicide and grievous bodily hurt within the case, which sparked outrage in Italy and has strained diplomatic relations with Egypt.
“We word with bitterness the court docket’s resolution, which rewards Egyptian vanity,” the Regeni household’s lawyer, Alessandra Ballerini, informed reporters exterior the court docket.
“It’s a setback, however we is not going to surrender,” she mentioned.
Regeni’s dad and mom and sister had been current on the listening to within the bunker room of Rebibbia jail, typically the stage for mafia trials.
The 28-year-old was doing analysis for a doctorate at Cambridge College when he was kidnapped in Cairo in January 2016.
His physique, bearing in depth indicators of torture, was finally discovered dumped on the outskirts of Cairo, bare from the waist down.
The Italian authorities joined the proceedings with a civil swimsuit for damages, in a symbolic present of assist.
However earlier than the trial correct might start, the court docket had first to rule on whether or not the 4 suspects, members of Egypt’s Nationwide Safety Company (NSA), had been conscious of the proceedings towards them. Egypt has repeatedly refused to supply their contact particulars.
At a preliminary listening to in Could, a decide dominated that media protection meant information of the trial would have reached them.
However the court docket overturned that ruling on Thursday, successfully sending the prosecution again to sq. one.
The 4 are named in court docket paperwork as Common Tariq Sabir, Colonels Athar Kamel and Uhsam Helmi and Main Magdi Ibrahim Abdelal Sharif, who’s accused of finishing up the killing.
Investigators imagine Regeni was kidnapped and killed after being mistaken for a overseas spy.
Prosecutor Sergio Colaiocco had informed the court docket that eye witness testimony and different “vital components of proof” implicated the safety officers within the homicide.
All 4 not solely knew concerning the trial however had “systematically and persistently acted to gradual and block the investigation”, he mentioned.
However lawyer Tranquillino Sarno, appointed by the court docket to defend Colonel Kamel, mentioned the case ought to be thrown out.
“The defendants know nothing. Not what they’re accused of. Not that we’re right here right this moment”.
Regeni’s corpse was discovered 9 days after he disappeared. His mom later mentioned it had been so badly mutilated she solely recognised her son by the “tip of his nostril”.
5 of his enamel had been damaged, 15 of his bones had been fractured and letters had been inscribed into his flesh, lawyer Ballerini mentioned.
As a part of his work for a doctorate, Regeni had been researching Egyptian commerce unions, a very delicate political difficulty.
His homicide triggered contemporary criticism of Egypt’s human rights report beneath President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
“The choice leaves a bitter style, however should be revered, and reveals what a good path appears like – one thing that would by no means happen in right this moment’s Egypt,” Claudio Francavilla from Human Rights Watch informed AFP.
He mentioned the listening to had at the very least “uncovered intimately the shameful and protracted lack of cooperation by Egyptian authorities, marred by diversions, lies, delays”.
Francavilla additionally referred to as on the worldwide neighborhood to “drastically change course to deal with Egypt’s human rights disaster” with “focused sanctions, arms embargo and human rights monitoring”.

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