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Amr Nabil/AP

Mubarak sentenced to 3 years

Court also sentenced 155 Muslim Brotherhood supporters, 54 of them to life in prison

An Egyptian court on Wednesday sentenced ousted president Hosni Mubarak to three years in prison on charges of stealing public funds.

"The court orders Mohamed Hosni Mubarak to be sent to jail for three years," said judge Osama Shaheen as Mubarak looked on from a cage flanked by his sons, who were sentenced to four years in jail on the same charges.

The court fined Mubarak and his sons $2.98 million and ordered them to repay about $17 million the court said they had stolen.

Mubarak's former intelligence chief, Abdel Fattah El Sisi, is poised to be elected president next week.

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The court also sentenced 155 Muslim Brotherhood supporters, 54 of them with life sentences, judicial sources said, on charges related to violence in the Nile Delta province of Mansour last August after the army's ouster of President Mohamed Morsi. 

The charges against the Brotherhood supporters included instigating violence and chaos, and membership in a banned group.

The graft case against the 86-year-old Mubarak, who is kept in custody at a military hospital, is one of two against the former president, who was ousted in a popular uprising in 2011 after nearly three decades in power. He is being retried over the killings of hundreds of protesters during the uprising.

Mubarak's two sons, onetime heir apparent Gamal and wealthy businessman Alaa, were also convicted Wednesday.

The Mubaraks were convicted of charges that they embezzled millions of dollars' worth of state funds over a decade toward the end of Hosni Mubarak's rule. The funds were meant for renovating and maintaining presidential palaces but were instead spent on upgrading the family's private residences.

Mubarak and his sons have the right to appeal their convictions before a higher court. Four other defendants in the case were acquitted.

The verdict against Mubarak may please some Egyptians who lived through three decades of autocracy, but analysts say that businessmen still loyal to him remain influential. And rights groups say that abusive practices of the Mubarak regime are alive.

Mubarak has been under house arrest at the military hospital since August.

It was not immediately clear if the three years he and his sons have spent in custody would be counted toward the sentences and if Mubarak would return to the army hospital or be sent to prison.

Wire services

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