Four-year-old sentenced to life in prison for murder in Egypt

Ahmed Mansour Karni has been convicted of committing four murders, attempting another eight, vandalising property and threatening police officers - all before the age of two 

Caroline Mortimer
Friday 19 February 2016 14:30
Egyptian courts have been cracking down on dissenters since the coup in 2013
Egyptian courts have been cracking down on dissenters since the coup in 2013

An Egyptian court has sentenced a four-year-old boy to life in prison for “committing murder” when he was aged just one.

Ahmed Mansour Karmi was not in court on Tuesday when he was convicted of four counts of murder, eight of attempted murder, one vandalisation of property and another count of threatening soldiers and police officers - all before his second birthday.

Ahmed was one of 115 defendants who were all handed life sentences at the same time at the court in western Cairo for crimes allegedly committed in early 2014.

His defence attorney, Faisal al-Sayd, told the Jerusalem Post the child’s name had been added to the list by mistake but the court did not pass Ahmed’s birth certificate on to the judge to prove he was born in September 2012.

He said: "The child Ahmed Mansour Karni's birth certificate was presented after state security forces added his name to the list of accused, but then the case was transferred to the military court and the child was sentenced in absentia in an ensuing court hearing.

"This proves that the judge did not read the case".

Another lawyer said the case showed “there is no justice in Egypt”.

He said: “The Egyptian scales of justice are not reversible. There is no justice in Egypt. No reason. Logic committed suicide a while ago. Egypt went crazy. Egypt is ruled by a bunch of lunatics."

Egypt has been ruled by a military dictatorship under President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi since Mohammed Morsi's elected government was ousted in 2013.

Approximately 40,000 opposition supporters are currently in jail as the government cracks down on dissent.

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