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Egypt: Net Tightens Around Mubarak Cronies

Source: IPS News

Toppled Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak’s cronies and political allies could not be touched for years, but his departure has stripped them of protection. Now they are under investigation for corruption and graft – and many Egyptians expect to finally see justice.

“It’s a beautiful time for all Egyptians,” says Sherif El-Sharkawy, a small business owner in Cairo. “We watched for years as these men raped our country with impunity.”

Anti-corruption campaigners accuse Mubarak and his cronies of treating Egypt as their own private estate, plundering its resources and funnelling their ill-gotten wealth into offshore accounts. They maintain that a small group of ruling party officials and business tycoons with close ties to Mubarak were given preferential treatment in land deals, allowed to buy state assets at a fraction of their value, and that they enriched themselves at the public’s expense. read more