Prosecutors in Rome formally requested a trial on Wednesday of four Egyptian security officers for the brutal killing five years ago of Giulio Regeni, an Italian student in Cairo.
The four suspects were named as General Tarig Sabir, Colonels Athar Kamel Mohamed Ibrahim and Uhsam Helmi, and Major Magdi Ibrahim Abdelal Sharif.
The Egyptians are accused of kidnapping, conspiracy to murder and grievous bodily harm, Italian news agencies reported, citing a statement from the prosecutors’ office.
Regeni was a Cambridge University graduate who was researching Egyptian trade unions. He was abducted in January 2016 and his mutilated body later found on the outskirts of Cairo.
His death sparked outrage in Italy and severely strained diplomatic relations with Egypt.
For a trial to go ahead, a judge would have to approve the prosecutors’ request. The four men would then likely be tried in absentia, unless Egypt agrees to extradite them.
Italian investigators, who have heard testimonies from former Egyptian security officials, believe Regeni was abducted and killed after being mistaken for a foreign spy.
Egypt has denied that its security services were involved and in December, authorities said they were temporarily closing their investigation into the murder. (Source: BBC)