It was one of the largest crowds in the square since Mubarak was ousted 16 months ago. Protestors expressed shock that the judge had acquitted the head of the security forces who had been in charge when demonstrators were killed.
They denounced the verdict as a sham because the court also acquitted many officials more directly responsible for the police who killed the demonstrators, and a broad range of lawyers and political leaders said Mubarak’s conviction was doomed to reversal on appeal.
Judge Ahmed Rifaat said that prosecutors had presented no evidence that either Mubarak or his top aides had directly ordered the killing of protesters.
Instead, the judge found that Mubarak was an “accessory to murder” because he failed to stop the killings.