A court has sentenced Egypt’s former oil minister and a fugitive businessman who was close to ousted leader Hosni Mubarak for 15 years after convicting them of corruption in a case involving natural gas exports to Israel.

Former oil minister Sameh Fahmy and businessman Hussein Salem were convicted of harming the country’s interests by exporting natural gas to Israel at prices below world market levels. Salem is on the run and was tried in absentia.

Thursday’s sentencing is the latest in a series of cases against former regime figures following Mubarak’s ouster on February 11, 2011.

Mubarak was acquitted of a similar charge but was later sentenced to life in prison for failing to prevent protesters’ killings during the uprising.

Egypt and Israel are bound by a 1979 peace treaty.

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