Autopsy shows lawyer was tortured to death at Matareya Police Station

Recently deceased lawyer Karim Hamdy was tortured to death at the notorious Matareya Police Station, an autopsy report released on Thursday concluded.

Hamdy is the latest in a string of fatalities at the station, all of which were allegedly caused by torture.

The lawyer was arrested on Sunday with another suspect on charges of belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood, according to an Interior Ministry statement. Hamdy was found dead on Tuesday after he was interrogated by national security officers, reported the state-owned newspaper Al-Ahram.

The autopsy report concluded that Hamdy’s injuries were consistent with those caused by torture. He had broken ribs and bleeding in the brain due to severe trauma to the head, in addition to bruises all over his body, concentrated on the head and abdomen, Al-Ahram said.

The prosecution ordered the detention of two national security officers for four days pending investigations into the case, reported Al-Ahram.

So far, investigations have determined that Hamdy was in good physical condition when he arrived at the Matareya station. However, after national security officers visited his cell and interrogated him two days later, Hamdy was found in critical condition, according to Al-Ahram.

Ministry of Interior spokesperson Hany Abdel Latif said in media statements that Hamdy was arrested for belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood and that weapons were found in his possession.

But human rights defenders refute those charges, and say Hamdy was the go-to lawyer in the area for all those facing injustice.

In the last week alone, two other detainees were reportedly tortured to death at the Matareya Police Station. Al-Ahram reported that Mostafa Ibrahim, a 28-year-old student arrested on drug charges, died from injuries sustained at the hands of security forces on Sunday. Emad al-Attar, an electrician reportedly arrested in a protest on January 30, was allegedly subjected to torture every day since his arrest, until the station called his family on Thursday to inform them of his death.

The Matareya Police Station has attracted increasing attention over the past year for the suspicious deaths of its detainees.

In June 2014, 23-year-old Ahmed Ibrahim al-Sayed died in custody at the station just a day before he finished his three-year prison sentence for theft. He was the second detainee to die at the station that month.

In its July 2014 review of the transitional government’s year in power, Amnesty International reported that at least four people were killed at the Matareya station in a 12-month period.


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