After 1156 days on pre-trial detention, Aya Hegazy will have to wait a further 3 weeks to learn her fate, along with her co-defendants in the Belady Foundation trial in Cairo.
The judge had previously indicated that he was ready to deliver his verdict on 23 March 2017. Instead, and without giving any reasons, he today adjourned the hearing to 16 April 2017. By the time of the next hearing, Aya Hegazy will have been imprisoned for 3 years and 2 weeks without having been convicted of any offence.
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.