The Suzanne Tamim murder trial has taken a surprising twist after the family of the Lebanese singer dropped a civil suit against the Egyptian tycoon accused of hiring a man to kill her. Hesham Talaat Moustafa, 50, a senior member of Egypt's ruling party and a former MP, was sentenced last year to death along with Mohsen el Sokari, 41, a former Egyptian state security officer who is accused of carrying out the murder in Dubai. According to some unconfirmed reports, the pop star's family had dropped the case in return for US$750 million. The lawyer of the family has dismissed these reports.
The two men were granted a retrial on grounds of legal errors and their new trial started on April 26.
The criminal trial in Cairo will continue, however. According to one court official, speaking to Reuters, on Sunday morning, the decision by the family to drop their own charges "will have no sway over the current proceedings."