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Prosecutors set out their case in Hosni Mubarak's trial

From Mohamed Fadel Fahmy, For CNN
January 4, 2012 -- Updated 2035 GMT (0435 HKT)
Ousted Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak is wheeled into court on a stretcher on January 3, 2012.
Ousted Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak is wheeled into court on a stretcher on January 3, 2012.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Prosecutors show scenes of police brutality against protesters during the uprising
  • Mubarak is charged with ordering the killing of protesters
  • The ex-president, who entered court on a stretcher, also faces corruption charges

Cairo (CNN) -- Prosecutors detailed acts of police brutality in their presentations Wednesday at the trial of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak on charges he ordered protesters killed during the country's uprising last year.

One video played for the court "shows a policeman loading a machine gun and firing directly at protesters, proving the use of live ammo," said Khaled Abu Bakr, a civil rights lawyer involved in the trial. Mubarak's lawyers have denied the assertion, he said.

Another video presented as evidence "shows a policeman firing a gas canister that hits a protester's face directly, causing him serious pain. Images of protesters included one of a man on the floor "with his brain spilled on the ground," Abu Bakr said.

The evidence presented by the prosecution includes audio recordings, videos, medical reports of victims, and excerpts from testimony given by Interior Ministry staff and officers obtained during the trial's earlier sessions, Abu Bakr said.

The prosecution contends that police brutality led to many casualties among the protesters.

Mubarak, who also faces corruption charges, has denied wrongdoing.

The former president was wheeled into court on a stretcher after noon. He was wearing sunglasses and was covered with a green blanket, as during his previous appearances.

Prosecutors are expected to focus Thursday on allegations that the former president and his sons squandered public money. Thursday is to be the final day of their three-day presentation.

Abu Bakr said that opening arguments Tuesday lasted an hour, during which prosecutor Mustapha Suleiman described Mubarak as "a tyrant who aimed to hand the rule to his younger son, Gamal, who promoted corruption in Egypt, allowing his friends and relatives to destroy the country without accountability."

Abu Bakr said he expects a verdict before January 25, the date last year that the uprising began. It ended Mubarak's 30-year rule in February.

Many Egyptians have criticized the court proceedings and some worry that Mubarak may be acquitted of the murder charges. Five police officers accused of killing protesters were acquitted last week.

Mubarak's health has been in question since his detention began in April, as reports of cancer and heart problems surfaced in the news media.

Former Egyptian Interior Minister Habib El Adly, six of his aides and two of Mubarak's sons are also on trial on a variety of charges.

The sons, Gamal and Alaa, also have pleaded not guilty.

"The defendants before you in the cage are the actual instigators and are the ones who gave police officers the order to shoot," prosecutor Mustapha Suleiman said, according to his spokesman, Adel Saeed. Suleiman also said that the prosecution has evidence that the regime used "thugs" against the protesters.

The defendants are accused of killing 225 protesters and injuring more than 1,300, Saeed said.

Amnesty International had estimated more than 840 protesters were killed and 6,000 injured. Saeed said his estimate was lower "because there has been a differentiation between those killed outside police stations while attacking the precinct and those shot while protesting."

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