Court acquits prominent comedian of blasphemy charges

The Al-Haram Misdemeanor Appeals Court on Wednesday acquitted actor Adel Imam of blasphemy charges after accepting his appeal against a three-month prison sentence.

Lawyer Asran Mansour, who raised the case against Imam, said in the last session that Imam ridiculed Islamic traditions in his movies and defamed Egyptian women at one of his theatrical performances.

A few representatives of the Cinematic Professions Syndicate had attended the last hearing session on 4 July.

A different lawsuit accusing Imam, the Arab world's most famous comedian, of the same charges was heard at a different court in April and dismissed.

Imam has frequently poked fun at authorities and politicians during his 40-year career, and his more serious films have dealt with the rise of Islamist militancy.

Cases against Imam had provoked concerns among many intellectuals and artists about the future of art and free expression in Egypt.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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