Hisham Talaat Moustafa

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Hisham Talaat Moustafa
Born (1959-12-09) December 9, 1959 (age 55)
Alexandria, Egypt
Nationality Egyptian
Occupation Businessman
Criminal penalty
Death by hanging (overturned)
Criminal status Re-sentenced to 15 years imprisonment[1]
Spouse(s) Howaida Morsy (1983-present)
Children Omar, Tarek, Mohamed
Parents Talaat Moustafa, Amal Mokhtar
Conviction(s) Murder – May 21, 2009

Hisham Talaat Moustafa (Arabic: هشام طلعت مصطفى‎) is an Egyptian businessman who had been elected in 2004 to the Shura Council in the Parliament of Egypt.[2] As the former chairman and former head of the Real Estate Branch of the Talaat Moustafa Group, his net worth was estimated at $800 million in 2007.[3] He was found guilty on May 21, 2009 for his involvement in the murder of Lebanese singer Suzanne Tamim, but his sentence to death by hanging was overturned on a legal technicality.[4] Following a retrial in 2010, he was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment.[1]

Background[edit]

Born in the Egyptian city of Alexandria in 1959, Moustafa graduated in 1980 from the University of Alexandria's College of Commerce with an accounting degree. He is the youngest son of construction magnate Talaat Moustafa and is married with three children (in order of birth): Omar, Tarek, and Mohamed.[5]

Murder case[edit]

On September 2, 2008, Moustafa was charged in Cairo of arranging the murder of Lebanese singer Suzanne Tamim.[6] Moustafa was stripped of his parliamentary immunity.[7] Shares in Talaat Moustafa Group, one of Egypt's biggest real estate developers, fell sharply on the day of his arrest as reports of the indictment reached the stock market.[8] The stock had declined over the summer as rumors of Moustafa's involvement in the murder swirled through Egypt. In November 2008, the presiding judge issued a gag order on the publication of case details other than procedural decisions and the final verdict.[2]

On May 21, 2009, Moustafa was found guilty of involvement in the murder through "incitement, agreement and assistance."[9] On June 25, he was sentenced to death by hanging, along with former police officer Mohsen al-Sukkari, who was paid $2 million to carry out the hit. Egypt's Grand Mufti Sheikh Ali Goma'a upheld the verdict: "The court found no reason to have mercy on the defendants and decided to execute them unanimously."[10] An appeal was filed the day before the August 25 deadline.[11]

Retrial[edit]

On March 4, 2010, the Cassation Court of Egypt accepted an appeal for a new trial after concluding the original verdict had made mistakes of legal technicality.[4] The defense argued that co-defendant Al-Sukkari was not properly represented during his first questioning. Prosecutor Moustafa Khater responded to the finding by stating that Al-Sukkari did not ask for a lawyer.[7] The retrial began on April 26. On May 28, Tamim's family dropped its civil suit against Moustafa and denied that they were paid any money in return. Judge Mahmoud el Khodeiry, former deputy chief of Egypt’s appeals court, said this would have no effect on the murder case.[12] On September 25, prosecutors spent two hours delivering final retrial statements, arguing that they had evidence from 39 witnesses and mobile phone messages. Documents presented to the court included records of an attempt by Moustafa to freeze Tamim’s bank account in Geneva.[7] On September 28, 2010, the court re-sentenced Moustafa to a reduced penalty of 15 years imprisonment. Political analysts were surprised that the judgment was issued before final statements were completed. Attorney Gamal Eid of the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information stated, "They did not even bother to go through the motions to save face. I do not trust that the judiciary is independent, and every day there is new proof of this."[1]

Assault investigation[edit]

In August 2010, Egyptian police opened an investigation of allegations that Moustafa had beaten his brother-in-law Ihab Mohamed Madi during the first week of Ramadan. Madi claimed that the beating began after he tried to intervene in an argument between his wife Sahar and Moustafa. Sahar, who is also Moustafa's sister,[13] has been noted as the only member of Moustafa's family to consistently attend his court hearings.[14]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c El-Naggar, Mona (2010-09-28). "No Death Sentence for Tycoon in Egypt". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-09-28. 
  2. ^ a b M.J. Stephey (2009-05-22). "Hisham Talaat Moustafa: Egypt's Condemned Tycoon". Time. Retrieved 2010-09-08. 
  3. ^ Michael Slackman (2009-05-21). "Egyptian Tycoon Sentenced to Death for Murder". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-04. 
  4. ^ a b Yasmine Saleh (2010-03-04). "Egypt tycoon facing death, gets retrial". Reuters. 
  5. ^ "TMG Executive Profile: Hisham Talaat Moustafa". Archive.org. Archived from the original on 2008-06-26. Retrieved 2008-06-26. 
  6. ^ Sherine El Madany and Emad El-Sayed (2008-09-02). "Hisham Talaat Moustafa referred to criminal court, TMG shares plunge 15.97 percent". Daily News Egypt. 
  7. ^ a b c Nadia Abou el Magd (2010-09-26). "Tamim murder suspects ‘alliance with the devil’". The National. Retrieved 2010-09-27. 
  8. ^ Jonathan Wright (2008-09-02). "Property tycoon charged over Tamim killing". Arabian Business. Retrieved 2008-09-03. 
  9. ^ "Death sentences for Suzanne Tamim murderers". BBC News. 2009-05-21. 
  10. ^ Nadia Abou el Magd (2009-07-27). "Tamim killers say they will appeal". The National. 
  11. ^ Nadia Abou el Magd (2009-08-25). "Appeals lodged over Tamim murder". The National. 
  12. ^ Nadia Abou el Magd (2010-05-30). "Tamim family drops civil suit". The National. Reuters. 
  13. ^ Nadia Abou el Magd (2010-03-04). "Court orders retrial in Tamim murder case". The National. Retrieved 2010-08-25. 
  14. ^ Yasmine Saleh (2010-08-23). "Egyptian tycoon accused of beating brother in-law". Reuters. Retrieved 2010-08-25. 

External links[edit]