Two Jews Sentenced to Death in Egypt; Eight to Long Imprisonment
Menu JTA Search

Two Jews Sentenced to Death in Egypt; Eight to Long Imprisonment

Download PDF for this date

The verdict of the Egyptian military court against the 13 Jews charged with “Zionist espionage” was announced today in Cairo. Two of the defendants were sentenced to death; two to life imprisonment; two to 15-year terms; and two to seven-year prison terms. Two of the defendants were acquitted. No verdict was handed town in the cases of two defendants who had left Egypt before the mass arrests took place.

The trial of the Jews ended last December, but the verdict was not announced pending approval by Col. Gamel Nasser, Egypt’s dictator. The two sentenced to death are: Dr. Moshe Litc Marzouk, a physician at the Jewish Hospital, and Samuel Azzar, a teacher. All the defendants pleaded “not guilty.”

The two sentenced to life imprisonment are Victor Levi, a draftsman, and Philip Natanson, a clerk in a broker’s office. Robert Dassan and Victorine Nino were sentenced to 15 years each. Seven-year sentences were meted out to Joseph Zafran, an architect, and Meir Samuel Muhass, a commission agent. The two who were acquitted are Elie Naim and Joseph Cohen.

Abraham Dar and Paul Frank, who were among the 13 charged with “espionage” in behalf of Israel, were not listed in the verdict but were listed as “fugitives.” The thirteenth defendant-Max Bennet, an employe of the Anglo-Egyptian Company-committed suicide while under arrest.

The prosecution alleged that during the years 1951-1954 Mr. Dar organized the remaining 12 into a group of two branches, one in Cairo and the other in Alexandria, taking orders from Israel. The aim of the group, the prosecution charged, was to communicate with Israel by wireless and to set up a workshop “for the production of explosives.” The indictment claimed that Dr. Marzouk was the administrative head of the group in Cairo and Mr. Azzar of the branch in Alexandria.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund