An Egyptian court sentenced former presidential candidate Ayman Nour, known for his moderate style, to five years in prison for "spreading false news that threatens the security of the country," according to a judicial source.
The "New Cairo Misdemeanors Court [eastern Cairo] sentenced both Nour and retired Col. Omar Afifi in absentia to five years of hard labor and slapped them with 500 Egyptian pound ($30) fines for publishing false news that threatens the country's security," the source told Anadolu Agency anonymously due to restrictions on speaking to media.
Nour was responsible for the Al Sharq satellite channel that was accused of broadcasting programs "raising rumors and fake news that disturbed the public peace," the source said.
Nour, who opposed the current regime, was a candidate for the presidency in the questioned 2005 presidential election won by former President Hosni Mubarak, who was toppled after the Jan. 25, 2011 uprisings.
Nour left Egypt in August 2013 after twin sit-ins - in Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya and Nahda squares - that were violently dispersed by Egyptian security forces some six weeks after Mohamed Morsi, Egypt's first democratically elected president, was ousted by Egypt's powerful military establishment.
Since the July 3, 2013 military coup in Egypt, several Egyptian courts have issued rulings based on the same accusations against a number of broadcasters and journalists who oppose the current Egyptian regime with varying prison terms.