The wife of ousted Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, Suzanne Thabet, pictured in 2010
The wife of ousted Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, Suzanne Thabet, pictured in 2010, on Monday pledged to hand over her money and property to the state, days after she was ordered detained on corruption charges, the official MENA news agency reported. © Khaled Desouki - AFP/File
The wife of ousted Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, Suzanne Thabet, pictured in 2010
Jailan Zayan, AFP
Last updated: October 19, 2011

Egypt ex-first lady pledges assets to state amid graft probe

The wife of ousted Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak on Monday pledged to hand over her money and property to the state, days after she was ordered detained on corruption charges, the official MENA news agency reported.

"Suzanne Thabet, the wife of former president Hosni Mubarak, has given three powers of attorney to Assem al-Gohari, the head of the Illicit Gains Authority, authorising him to withdraw the cash from accounts in (two banks) and to sell a villa she owns," in Cairo, MENA reported.

The 70-year-old former first lady was under arrest, along with her husband, in a hospital in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh.

She reportedly suffered from a suspected heart attack on Friday, hours after the illicit gains department ordered her detention for 15 days on charges of illegal acquisition of wealth.

Her arrest comes as part of a sweeping probe into corruption launched by the country's military rulers who took power when Mubarak was overthrown by a popular uprising in February.

Mubarak's wife was moved to the intensive care unit on Friday, after suffering a heart attack and briefly losing consciousness, according to the hospital chief.

She had been interrogated in a hospital waiting room about a luxury villa she owns in Cairo, as well as 20 million pounds (about $3.3 million) held in a bank account.

Her husband has been in custody at the same hospital since April 13 when he also reportedly suffered a heart attack during questioning.

The authority also remanded Mubarak in custody for a further 15 days on Friday, after a three-hour interrogation.

As well as illegally acquiring wealth during his presidency, Mubarak was also asked about having personal control of the $145-million bank account of the Alexandria Library.

The former president has been questioned by the state prosecutor on several other charges, including ordering the shooting of anti-regime protesters. His detention has been repeatedly extended.

The half-Welsh Suzanne was seen as the driving force behind plans to have her son Gamal take over the presidency from his father, a highly unpopular prospect in Egypt that sparked angry protests in recent years.

Mubarak, his wife, his two sons Alaa and Gamal and their wives were banned from travel and their assets ordered frozen by general prosecutor Abdel Magid Mahmud shortly after the former strongman was overthrown.

The two sons, along with dozens of officials and businessmen associated with the former regime, are being held in Cairo's notorious Tora prison which housed political dissidents during the Mubarak era.

Before the popular uprising which ousted Mubarak, Gamal, who was close to business executives and held a top post in Egypt's ruling party, was regarded as his father's successor, while Alaa concentrated on business.

The wives of Alaa and Gamal, Heidi Rasekh and Khadiga al-Gammal, have also been questioned over Mubarak's wealth.

Earlier this month, Switzerland said it had frozen 410 million francs ($463 million) in funds linked to Mubarak and his associates.

Mubarak's 30-year grip on power was brought to an end on February 11 following 18 straight days of mass protests.

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