Muslim cleric gets 11 years in prison for burning Bible

An Islamic preacher known for his hate speeches against Coptic Christians was sentenced to 11 years in prison for tearing up and burning a Bible outside the U.S. Embassy during a protest against an anti-Islam film last year.

An Egyptian court in Cairo sentenced Ahmed Abdullah on Sunday for insulting religion and burning a Bible.  He was also fined 3,000 Egyptian pounds, or $430.

Abdullah’s son was sentenced to eight years in prison and fined 2,000 Egyptian pounds, or $286 for his role in the burning.

Abdullah publicly burned a copy of the Bible as part of a protest against the anti-Islam film "Innocence of Muslims," on Sept. 11, 2012.  The film was produced in the United States by an Egyptian-born Coptic Christian, and set off anti-American protests across the Muslim world. Abdullah also announced that he planned to send his grandson to urinate on the Bible.

The ruling came as a surprise to many, because Egyptian courts have been known for prosecuting and sentencing Christians on false charges of blasphemy.

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