March 19, 2012 / 7:33 PM / 8 years ago

Egypt acquits Qaeda leader brother, others in retrial

CAIRO, March 19 (Reuters) - The brother of al Qaeda leader Ayman al Zawahiri and seven others were cleared of terrorism charges after a re-trial in an Egyptian military court on Monday, their lawyer said.

The court overturned an earlier conviction of Mohamed al Zawahiri and the others on charges of “committing terrorist crimes, harming national security, and planning to overthrow the state,” lawyer Mamdouh Ismail told Reuters.

A court source said the men would be released on Tuesday and did not give further details of the charges.

The Supreme Military Court said it would give reasons for the acquittal later, Ismail said.

Zawahiri, together with Mohamed Islamboli and Abdelaziz el-Gamal had been sentenced to death in absentia in the 1990s in the first trial, Ismail said. The others had received jail terms ranging from five years to life. (Reporting by Shaimaa Fayed; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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