Middle East

Egypt jails ex-minister Anas al-Fekky for seven years

Former Egyptian information minister Anas al-Fekky - file photo from 21 November 2006
Image caption Anas al-Fekky has been acquitted in a separate corruption case

An Egyptian court has sentenced former information minister Anas al-Fekky to seven years in prison for misappropriation of public funds.

He was charged with deliberately misusing funds from the state-run radio and television union.

The former head of state TV, Osama el-Sheikh, was sentenced to five years on the same charges.

Fekky served in the cabinet of former President Hosni Mubarak, who was ousted in February after mass street protests.

The two were found guilty of paying inflated prices for television soap operas.

They are the latest former high-ranking officials to be sentenced on corruption-related charges.

Fekky was acquitted earlier this month of separate corruption charges.

Anger at government corruption helped fuel the protests that overthrew Mr Mubarak, and these trials are being seen as a test of the resolve of the military council that is now in power.

Along with his sons Alaa and Gamal, Mr Mubarak has been charged with "premeditated murder" of some protesters, charges he denies. If found guilty, he could face the death penalty.

Hundreds of people died in 18 days of revolt against Mr Mubarak, who ruled for almost three decades.

The former leader is also being questioned over charges that he and his family made huge profits during the three decades he spent as Egyptian president.