Mubarak's Sons Charged with Insider Trading

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's two sons believed to have made millions of pounds in illicit gains from the sale of a bank.

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Elad Benari,

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak
Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's two sons, already in jail for more than a year and on trial, were charged with insider trading Wednesday, The Associated Press reported.

According to a statement by the prosecutor-general's office, the two, along with seven others, made millions of pounds in illicit gains from the sale of a bank.

Mubarak and his two sons, one-time heir apparent Gamal and wealthy businessman Alaa, are already on trial for separate charges of corruption. They have all been in prison since April 2011, two months after Mubarak was ousted in a popular uprising.

The prosecutor's statement alleged that Mubarak's sons and the seven other defendants made illegal gains of some 2 billion Egyptian pounds and that their actions violated central bank and stock market regulations.

The statement said the nine conspired to buy a controlling 80 percent stake in the bank in 2006 without declaring their share to the stock market authority. They later traded those shares through closed funds and investment companies based abroad.

“They deliberately withheld this essential information on the sale of the bank from other traders in its shares to execute their criminal plot and violate the principles of transparency and equality between traders,” said the statement, according to AP.

The statement added that Gamal, 48, has unlawfully made a profit of nearly 500 million Egyptian pounds from the sale of the Watani Bank and that his brother Alaa, believed to be around 50, used insider information about the bank to reap an illegal profit of some 12 million Egyptian pounds.

Gamal Mubarak was viewed by many as a corrupt politician who used his father's position to illegally amass a fortune while working with a coterie of regime-backed wealthy businessmen and powerful politicians to ensure that he succeeded his father.

Gamal rapidly climbed to the top of the ruling National Democratic Party and had become its de facto boss by the eve of his father's ouster 15 months ago, when he was effectively running Egypt's day-to-day affairs. At the time of the uprising, there was growing anxiety in Egypt that his succession was imminent and that anxiety is seen as one of the key sparks for the uprising that overthrew Mubarak.

Meanwhile, a verdict is expected on June 2 against Mubarak and the two sons in the cases that were already in progress.

Mubarak, 84, faces additional charges of complicity in the death of some 900 protesters during the uprising last year that ousted him. The former leader could get the death penalty if convicted on the charges linked to killing protesters.

Meanwhile, Mubarak’s last prime minister, Ahmed Shafiq, has been named one of two candidates to face off in a presidential election runoff. He will face Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohammed Mursi.

Scenes of last year’s anti-Mubarak uprising returned to Cairo’s Tahrir Square on Monday, as thousands rioted, some of them torching Shafiq’s headquarters.