On Wednesday, an Egyptian court sentenced the husband of the former health minister to jail in the case known in the media as “bribery of the Ministry of Health”.
The Cairo Criminal Court has ruled that the ex-husband, Muhammad Abdul-Majid al-Ashhab, Muhammad Abdul-Majid Hussain al-Ashhab, who works as a senior specialist at the Misr Life Insurance Company, has been sentenced to 10 years in prison and a fine of 500,000 Egyptian pounds (about $26,000), according to local newspaper Al-Shorouk.
It also sentenced Mohamed Ahmed Beheiry, director of the licensing division of the Free Treatment Foundation, to one year in prison with hard labour.
The verdict included exonerating the accused and the bribery brokers from punishment in accordance with the law after their confession, namely Mr. Attia Ibrahim Al-Fayoumi, owner of Al-Fayoumi Hospital, and Hussam Al-Din Abdullah Fouda, an armed forces officer with a pension.
The prosecution had referred the four suspects to criminal proceedings and charged the first defendant with asking for 5 million Egyptian pounds (about $264,000) and taking him as a bribe of £600,000 from the owners of a private hospital in exchange for using his influence to obtain decisions and benefits from officials of the Ministry of Health.
The Public Prosecution Service states that the convicted person prepared a false report that did not contain any violations, and the fourth defendant was charged with committing that forgery.
The prosecution has stated that the evidence in the lawsuit has been established on the basis of the statements of 13 witnesses, including the two owners of the hospital, who informed the Administrative Control Authority of the bribery incident at its request, and the convicted with the permission of the Public Prosecution Service until his arrest was completed.
The Public Prosecution Service referred, among other things, to the statements of the two defendants who mediated in the bribery, the investigation of the seized mobile phones from the suspect and the correspondence that confirmed the commission of the incident.
The allegations were also proved by, according to the prosecution, all hospital inspection reports, both valid and falsified, and a review of bank documents showing that the bribe amount had been given, in addition to what was supported by the prosecution’s witnessing and listening to the meeting and conversations that authorized its recording.