Egyptian court jails minor for part in heretical Islamic sect

Agence France-Presse, August 31, 1999

ALEXANDRIA, Egypt, Aug 31 (AFP) - An Egyptian court on Sunday jailed a 17-year-old boy for three years for his involvement with a heretical Islamic sect, days after sentencing the sect leader to five years in prison.

Ibrahim al-Sayed Ibrahim was a disciple of Mohamed Ibrahim Mahfuz, 63, who was jailed on Monday together with 13 members of his sect.

The minor, who was tried in a special sitting of the court, had made a pilgrimage to the "prophet" Mahfuz's home in Egypt's second city and reported having seen "a divine light radiating from his body."

The court said it hoped the sentence would "serve as a lesson to other children attacking religion."

Seven of Mahfuz's followers were sent down with their leader for five years on Monday, while the others received jail terms of one year.

Mahfuz had allegedly taught his followers he was God Incarnate and called on them to pray towards his home city of Alexandria rather than the Saudi city of Mecca as required by Islam.

He also taught his followers to pray just twice a day, rather five times as demanded by Islam.

A total of 20 alleged members of the sect were arrested in December -- one was released soon after and five were acquitted.

Islam is the state religion in Egypt and it is against the law to question its precepts.


To see more documents/articles regarding this group/organization/subject click here.