Lawyers' strike means Tamim murder retrial is adjourned

The retrial of the two men accused of murdering the Lebanese singer Suzanne Tamim in Dubai will not restart for almost three months.

CAIRO // The retrial of the two men accused of murdering the Lebanese singer Suzanne Tamim in Dubai was adjourned for almost three months today as defence lawyers continue to abide by a national strike. The Egyptian Lawyers Syndicate has been on strike for almost three weeks in response to the imprisonment of two lawyers in Tanta, a city in the Nile Delta, for assaulting the local public prosecutor. Trials also tend to break for the summer in July and August. Judge Adel Abdel Salam Gomaa said that the two men would remain in custody until their trial resumes on September 25 to hear the closing arguments from the prosecution and defence. Hesham Talaat Moustafa, 50, the billionaire tycoon and a senior member of Egypt's ruling party, is accused of inciting, assisting and paying Mohsen el Sokari, 41, a former state security officer, US$2 million (Dh7.3m) to murder Tamim, his estranged lover, almost two years ago. Both men were sentenced to death by hanging last year after being convicted of murdering Tamim in her Jumeirah Beach Residence apartment in July 2008. However after an appeal, the men were granted a retrial, with three new judges, which began in April. The court was due to begin hearing closing arguments on Saturday, but was postponed when defence lawyers said they would join the strike. The judge offered to assign the defendants new lawyers, which both defendants declined. nmagd@thenational.ae

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