An Egyptian court has sentenced the deputy governor of the country’s second-largest city to 12 years in prison on corruption charges.


The Cairo criminal court also sentenced Souad el-Kholy, deputy governor of the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, to a one-year suspended sentence for bribery, profiteering and squandering public funds on Wednesday. The court acquitted five local businessmen in the same case.


El-Kholy can appeal the verdict against her.


She became Alexandria’s deputy governor in 2015 and was arrested two years later, in October 2017, in a case linked to illegal seizures of state land, illegal construction and building violations. She is the most senior female official to be arrested on corruption charges.


Alexandria is notorious for illegal construction and demolition of historical buildings to make way for high-rise apartment towers.