South Cairo Prosecution decided on Monday to renew the detention of a non-commissioned police officer and a police sergeant for 15 days pending investigations for their involvement in the escape of a defendant in the “Helwan Brigades” case last week, according to state-run newspaper Al-Ahram.
The defendant, Ahmed El-Saidi, who was detained pending investigations into the “Helwan Brigades” case, reportedly escaped from his police guards while he was undergoing medical examinations in El-Manial hospital.
Following his escape, South Cairo Prosecution opened an investigation into the two police officers assigned to guard the defendant while he was undergoing medical examinations. It also investigated another three police officers and three non-commissioned police officers who were among the force assigned to transfer El-Saidi to El-Manial hospital
According to the investigations, El-Saidi was disguised in a doctor’s uniform and jumped over the hospital’s walls to escape, Al Ahram reported.
Last week, El-Saidi’s family voiced their doubts about the authenticity of reports by several local media outlets that said El-Saidi had fled from police during medical examinations, according to a statement they issued.
In the statement, El-Saidi’s family asserted that they only heard about the incident from local media reports. They voiced their doubts about the narrative that he had escaped police custody.
“We heard through several local media outlets and the state-affiliated newspaper Al-Youm Al-Sabaa that our son fled during medical examinations in El-Manial hospital. We doubt the authenticity of this narrative; the security apparatuses should take responsibility for his safety,” the statement read.
Moreover, the family expressed their concern regarding the fate of their son, arguing that he has a very reserved personality and the idea of him fleeing is “impossible”. He also has some kind of disease, the family said, without providing further details about what the disease is.
In 2014, the “Helwan Brigades” achieved notoriety following the release of a video featuring a dozen men holding firearms. As one of the men speaks directly into the camera delivering the group’s statement, pedestrians are seen walking past in the periphery of the frame.
The group has limited its threat of violence to “the Interior Ministry in south Cairo”. In the video, members held up four fingers with their palms outwards in a sign of solidarity with the Rabaa Al-Adaweya sit-in, which was violently dispersed on 14 August 2013. The “Helwan Brigades” insist that they are not members of the Muslim Brotherhood.