Cairo: An Egyptian court has sentenced a train official to three years in prison after finding him guilty of forcing two ticketless passengers to jump from a speeding train, legal sources said Thursday.
The case dates back to October last year when an Egyptian man died and another was injured after witnesses said a rail employee forced them to jump from the train for not having tickets in the province of Tanta north of Cairo. The incident sparked an outcry in the country.
The Criminal Court in Tanta Wednesday convicted the train head and handed him a three-year jail term, the sources added.
He was charged with manslaughter. The verdict can be appealed.
The man who died in the incident was identified as Mohammed Eid, a street vendor. He reportedly jumped from the train with his colleague Ahmed Mohammed, when the pair were unable to pay a fine of 70 Egyptian pounds (Dh16) each for travelling without a ticket.
The two passengers were returning from the coastal city of Alexandria inside the train where they were asked to pay the fares and a fine for not having tickets. When they said they had no money, one train official opened the door of the carriage and ordered them to leave the speeding train, the witnesses said.
In recent months, Egyptian rail authorities have toughened measures including fines against ticketless passengers in an attempt to augment revenues for revamping the ageing state-run facility.