Cairo: An Egyptian court on Saturday cleared Farouk Hosni, who served for more than two decades as culture minister under the toppled president Hosni Mubarak, of graft charges, a ruling expected to be appealed by the country’s top prosecutor.
The Criminal Court in Giza, near Cairo, said there was no evidence that Hosni had made illegal earnings from his position as a minister, which he held from 1987 until early 2011 when a popular uprising erupted against Mubarak and forced him to step down later.
Investigators at the state Illicit Gains Authority had accused Hosni of illegally earning around $3 million and requested that he should repay twice the sum. Hosni said he had earned his wealth from selling his paintings, but failed to furnish official documents to support his claim, according to local media.
Egyptian authorities have recently imposed travel bans on several officials from the Mubarak regime and frozen their assets pending further legal action. Mubarak’s two sons are being on trial on charges of insider stock trading.