Egyptian military court delivers sentence in Mercedes bribe case

The Supreme Military Court in Egypt on Wednesday fined and sentenced two people who were found guilty of receiving bribes from the German Deimler-Benz automotive company. The bribes were intended to facilitate the company’s business dealings in Egypt.

Abdel Hamid Wasfy, former chairman of a subsidiary of the Arab Organization for Industrialization, a state-run company affiliated with the Egyptian armed forces, was sentenced to two years in prison. His wife, Zenat Ibrahim, was given a suspended prison sentence of one year. The two were also fined LE2.72 million.

The court, however, acquitted Breikaa Deifallah, another former chairman of the subsidiary who was accused in the case.

The Egyptian attorney general had referred the defendants to military court on 7 April. The case has caused great public concern since the time US Attorney General Eric Holder revealed the bribe allegations last year.

Investigations revealed that Wasfy took one million German marks and 522,000 euros from the German company in exchange for approving the sale of cars to the company.

In March 2010, the US government charged the German giant car manufacturer and three of its subsidiaries with attempting to bribe officials in 22 countries, including Egypt, over a period of twenty years, in return for contracts selling cars to governmental bodies.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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