Egyptian court sentences ex-president Mursi to life in prison over espionage, jailbreak

A court in Egypt has sentenced former President Mohamed Mursi and Muslim brotherhood leader Mohamed Badie to life in prison for conspiring with foreign groups, Egyptian state TV reports.

The verdict said that Mursi and fellow Islamists conspired with Hamas and Hezbollah operatives.

In a separate case, Mursi has also been charged with endangering national security by leaking state secrets and sensitive documents to Qatar.

The former Islamist leader was ousted from power in 2013, following mass protests against his rule.

Last month Mursi, along with more than 100 others, were sentenced to death after being convicted of jailbreaks and attacks on police during a 2011 uprising that toppled President Hosni Mubarak.

The court had referred the sentences to the Grand Mufti, Egypt’s highest religious authority, for confirmation before issuing its final verdict.

Mursi was elected president in 2012 as the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood’s compromise candidate. He was in power for a year, until he was ousted after mass protests.

In total, 17 Muslim Brotherhood-linked figures were given life sentences Tuesday. The court has also sentenced Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood deputy head Khairat el-Shater and two others to death in the same case, Reuters reported.

Death sentences have been reportedly handed to 13 other defendants in absentia.

The verdicts can be appealed.