An Egyptian court has thrown out charges against former President Hosni Mubarak, his interior minister and six aides over the killing of protesters during the 2011 Egyptian uprising.
That same day, Chief Judge Mahmoud Kamel al-Rashidi also cleared Mubarak and his sons, Alaa and Gamal, of corruption charges related to gas exports. The judge said too much time had elapsed since the alleged crime took place for the court to rule on the matter.
Nearly 900 protesters were killed in the 18-day uprising that ended when Mubarak stepped down, handing over power to the military. The trial, however, was concerned only with the killing of 239 protesters whose names were cited in the charge sheet.
Mubarak, 86, will not walk free after Saturday's verdicts. He was found guilty in May in another case related to theft of public funds and has been serving that three-year sentence while under house arrest for medical reasons in an army hospital in an upscale Cairo suburb.
Saturday's rulings can be appealed and the state prosecutor said he would study the verdicts before deciding whether to appeal.
The packed courtroom erupted in cheers after the judge finished reading the verdicts. Mubarak, wearing sunglasses and a sweater, had been grim-faced when he was wheeled into the courtroom on a stretcher.
The judge said the former president should not be on trial in the first place.
"It is not suitable for a former president to be taken to a criminal court, according to the terms and conditions of criminal law, or to consider the things he did wrong within his political responsibilities, even those crimes mentioned in the accusation list," he said.
Mubarak's supporters leapt out of their benches in celebration when the judge pronounced the verdict, chanting: "Say the truth, don't be scared, Mubarak is innocent."
While delivering his judgment, Rashidi, however, praised the January 2011 uprising, saying that its goals were justified.
Al Jazeera and wire services