*FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE*

 

Aya Hegazy and co-defendants acquitted of all charges by Egyptian court

 

CAIRO, 16 APRIL: After more than three years in pre-trial detention, Egyptian charity founder Aya Hegazy and seven co-defendants have been acquitted today of all charges against them. BHRC looks forward to their imminent release.

Ms. Hegazy is a US-Egyptian citizen and the founder of the Belady Foundation for street children; she was arrested in May 2014 as part of a crackdown by the Egyptian government on NGOs.

BHRC has previously expressed serious concerns at the length of pre-trial detention and unreasoned refusals to grant conditional release. This case highlights systemic issues in the Egyptian criminal justice system: BHRC has co-authored an open letter to President Sisi on punitive and excessive use of pre-detention in cases of lawyers and human rights defenders. No response has been received from any member of the Egyptian government to date.

BHRC has been observing Aya Hegazy’s trial on behalf of EuroMed Rights since February 2016, and has attended almost all hearings since then. For further details of our concerns raised about the trial to date, please see our interim report.

Notes to editors:

For an interview with a BHRC spokesperson please contact Ed Gillett on coordination@barhumanrights.org.uk / +44 (0)7854 197862

The Bar Human Rights Committee of England and Wales (BHRC) is the international human rights arm of the Bar of England and Wales, working to protect the rights of advocates, judges and human rights defenders around the world. The BHRC is concerned with defending the rule of law and internationally recognised legal standards relating to human rights and the right to a fair trial. It is independent of the Bar Council.

About the Bar Human Rights Committee


The Bar Human Rights Committee of England and Wales (BHRC) is the international human rights arm of the Bar of England and Wales. We work to protect the rights of advocates, judges and human rights defenders around the world, defending the rule of law and internationally recognised legal standards relating to human rights and the right to a fair trial.

BHRC depends on donations and membership subscriptions to fund our vital work around the world. Find out more here.

Bar Human Rights Committee of England and Wales

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