Mubarak in second trial - AFP - August 15, 2011
An image grab taken from Egyptian state TV shows ousted Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak lying on a stretcher inside a cell at a courtroom in Cairo on August 15, 2011. Photo by AFP
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CAIRO - Hosni Mubarak's lawyer said yesterday there was "no strong evidence" that the former Egyptian president was involved in the contentious 15-year deal to export gas to Israel.

Farid al-Deeb told a court that the deal had been struck by a technical committee and approved by the government without the former president's intervention.

Mubarak, 83, and fugitive business tycoon Hussein Salem face charges of wasting public money by selling Egyptian gas to Israel at prices lower than the market value.

Mubarak is also charged with complicity in killing around 850 protesters during a popular revolt that ousted him last year.

The next hearing is scheduled for today.

The gas pipeline from Egypt to Israel has been shut for much of the time since Mubarak's regime fell a year ago, due to both sabotage and the public outcry over the price. Electricity prices in Israel have soared as a result.