Cairo: Ahmed Shafiq, who has lost Egypt`s first democratically-held presidential elections to President Mohamed Morsi, was referred to a criminal court along with ten other Aviation ministry officials over alleged charges of profiteering and seizing public funds.
The referral petition said the defendants had agreed to allocate ministry-owned lands to private firms without calling for tenders as stipulated by the law.
They also entrusted private companies to implement projects for the ministry for inflated prices, also without calling for bids, according to the referral order.
Shafiq, who was the last prime minister under ousted President Hosni Mubarak, travelled to the United Arab Emirates in the wake of his loss in the presidential election against Morsi in June.
Authorities have placed Shafiq on airport watch lists and named him as a defendant in another criminal case on charges of selling a 40,000 square meter plot of land in Ismailia that was owned by the Cooperative Housing Association of Air Force Officers to Mubarak`s sons Alaa and Gamal at below-market rates in the 1990s, when he was the commander-in-chief of the Air Force.
Alaa and Gamal Mubarak are also accused in the case.
Activists accuse Shafiq of escaping the trial and demand his arrest and return, while his supporters believe that he did not flee justice.
Meanwhile, the criminal court is expected to start looking into the appeals of former president Housni Mubarak and his minister of the interior Habib al Adly on December 23. Both were sentenced to life term imprisonment for killing protesters during the January revolution.