An Egyptian court has convicted and sentenced 36 Islamists, including a top leader of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, to life imprisonment.

The state-run MENA news agency says Mohamed Badie and the other defendants were sentenced on Monday for inciting violence that led to the killing of three people in July 2013.

The case goes back to the days after the military's ouster of Islamist president Mohammed Morsi, a Muslim Brotherhood member. It's one in a series of mass trials involving members and supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood since they were toppled from power in 2013.

Rights groups have criticized Egypt for the mass trials and many death penalties handed down en masse.

Badie was given the death penalty in another case and also life sentences in other ongoing cases.