[hackmeeting] Fwd: Cybercops in schwulen Chatrooms

merce en grn.es merce en grn.es
Mar Ene 8 12:54:04 CET 2002

ir chateando, ir, que os acabaran mirando hasta el culo



Cybercops in schwulen Chatrooms

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q/depesche  02.1.5/1

Cybercops in schwulen Chatrooms

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Barely two weeks after 23 men were condemned in Cairo to serve prison 
terms at hard labor for homosexual behavior, two Egyptian university 
students were sentenced under the same law.  Their crime: responding to an 
undercover police agent's request for gay contacts in an Internet chatroom.

The case clearly demonstrates a continuing campaign of entrapment by the 
Cairo Vice Squad.  It also shows the scope given to intolerance and abuse 
by Egypt's Law 10 of 1961 on the Combat of Prostitution, which is regularly 
used to jail and discredit men suspected of homosexual behavior.

One of the two students, who did not appear at his trial and was sentenced in 
absentia, was condemned to one year in prison and one year of probation; 
the other received three months in prison and three months' probation. 
IGLHRC calls for an immediate pardon for both.  IGLHRC again calls on 
Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak to pardon the 23 men convicted in Cairo in 
November, to investigate patterns of intrusive and abusive behavior by the 
Vice Squad, and to put an end to legally fostered persecution and 
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On December 19, the Egyptian daily Al Ahram reported that two university 
students had been convicted for alleged homosexuality. The report appeared 
on the same day that Mahmoud, a 16 year-old convicted in the "Cairo-52" 
case, was freed by an appeals court in Cairo. According to the article 
(possibly timed to obviate any suggestion of leniency which Mahmoud's 
release might provide), a security agent posing as gay arranged a meeting 
where the two were arrested.

A number of confusing press accounts followed, with CNN and the 
Associated Press reporting that the men had been accused of "setting up a 
website" where they sought gay contacts.  According to the Associated 
Press, judicial officials, "speaking on condition on anonymity," stated the 
men had been convicted on December 18, and had offered gay sex for 100 
Egyptian pounds per hour.

The files in the case show many of these statements were misleading. The 
case was initiated by Major Essam Abul Ezz of Cairo's Vice Squad. On 
September 15, 2001, Major Abul Ezz, posing as a gay man, used a Yahoo 
chatroom where he "spoke" to the two defendants separately. He arranged to 
meet them separately, but on the same day, near the Ramses Hilton Hotel. 
There, he arrested both. The defendants were respectively 19 and 22 years 
old, and were students at two of Cairo's universities.

The Major testified to the Public Prosecutor that one of his "confidential 
secret sources" had assured him that many homosexuals offer sex on the 
Internet in exchange for money. Yet this allegation did not motivate the 
arrests--the Major accused only one of the defendants of asking for money in 
return for sex--nor did it figure in the final charge.  Both men were charged 
under Article 9(c) of Law 10/1961, with "habitual practice of debauchery." 
This was the same charge used against the 52 men arrested in the Queen 
Boat discotheque on May 10/11 of this year.  It is used in Egyptian law as a 
catch-all to cover consensual homosexual behavior between men, and (unlike 
other provisions of Law 10/1961) does not entail the exchange of sex for 

The lawyer of Sherif A., one of the two men, stated subsequently at the trial 
that his client had been subjected to beatings at the Vice Squad. 
Nonetheless, both defendants pleaded not guilty when taken before the 
Public Prosecutor at Boulaq Abul Ella.  (Boulaq Abul Ella--a district in 
downtown Cairo, near the Ramses Hilton--is different from Boulaq Al-Dakrour 
in Giza, where IGLHRC mistakenly believed at first the men had been 
arrested.) They were referred to the Administration of Forensic Medicine for 
anal and genital medical examination (a practice IGLHRC has condemned as 
invasive and abusive) and, according to the file, were both found "used." They 
were released by the prosecutor after charges were pressed.

Only Sherif A. appeared at the trial on December 5 (not December 18, as 
press reports indicated).  Neither Islam A. nor his lawyer attended; possibly 
as a consequence, he received the longer sentence, one year in prison and 
one year's probation. He is believed to be in hiding.  Sherif A. was sentenced 
to three months in prison and three months' probation.  He appealed the 
sentence; his appeal was heard, and rejected, on December 22.

IGLHRC has monitored the Egyptian situation consistently since the 
beginning of what now appears to be a wave of arrests, in May 2001. Detailed 
information on earlier developments can be found in previous IGLHRC alerts, 
"Emergency Court Trials for Homosexual Suspects" (statement by IGLHRC 
and Human Rights Watch), July 3, 2001 

"Fact Sheet: Egyptian Justice on Trial: The Case of the Cairo 52," 
October 15, 2001 

"Egypt: Teenager Released from Jail After His Sentence Is Reduced on 
Appeal," December 19, 2001 

See also a Press Information Note, "Explaining Egypt's Targeting of 
Gays," published by the Middle East Research and Information Project 
and republished by IGLHRC, at 
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relayed by harkank en quintessenz.at

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q/depesche taeglich ueber 
zivile freiheiten im netz


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