Egypt convicts top anti-graft tsar for reporting government corruption

Egypt convicts top anti-graft tsar for reporting government corruption
Egypt's former anti-corruption chief was sentenced to one year in prison for 'exaggerating' the impact of graft on the country.
2 min read
28 July, 2016
Hisham Geneina was sentenced to jail for spreading false information [AFP]
A court in Egypt has convicted the country's former anti-graft tsar to jail for "exaggerating" the level of corruption in the country. 

Hisham Geneina was sentenced to a year in prison and a fine of 20,000 Egyptian pounds [$2,250] for "spreading false news" in the country.

If he pays this along with an additional 10,000 pounds he will avoid incarceration.

Judge Haitham el-Saghair passed the verdict against former Chief Auditor Geneina, who has alleged that massive levels of corruption among Egyptian officials had cost the country billions of dollars.

Geneina led the Central Auditing Organisation until he was dismissed in a decree from Egypt's general-turned politician President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi last March.

Ahead of his trial in June, Geneina, 32, told AFP he was convinced that his sacking was based on an erroneous media report suggesting he attributed the 600-billion figure to 2015 alone.

He was sentenced to jail over "spreading false information aimed at disrupting public peace and order", a judicial source said.

The 62-year-old retired judge ignited an uproar last year after he alleged that corruption had cost the country 600 billion pounds [$67.6 billion].

Within three months Geneina was charged with spreading false information and tried over reporting corruption at the heart of the state.

He faced an intense campaign from Egyptian media which accused Geneina and his family of tarnishing the country and having links with the banned Islamist opposition movement, the Muslim Brotherhood.

Agencies contributed to this report.