Disgraced Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak has been fined over $30m for damaging the country's economy by cutting internet and mobile phone services in an ill-fated attempt to quell the protests earlier this year.
The internet and phone network shutdown began at the end of January as protestors prepared for widespread demonstrations against the Mubarak regime.
Vodafone said at the time that "under Egyptian legislation the authorities have the right to issue such an order, and we are obliged to comply with it".
The country's internet services were cut again in February, apparently on Mubarak's orders, as the regime feared that it may be deposed.
Judge Hamdi Okasha reportedly issued a total of $90m in fines to Mubarak and two of his former aides as compensation for the huge financial hit suffered by Egypt as a result of their extreme actions.
However, more serious charges await the deposed leader, particularly those relating to widespread corruption over the 30 years he was in power and of ordering the killing of protestors in riots which ultimately led to his downfall.
Mubarak is reportedly claiming to be too ill to face the charges, however, and remains under house arrest at a hospital in Sharm el-Sheikh.
The judicial order again highlights the key economic and social role played by internet communications in modern societies.
Libyan despot Muammar Gadaffi used similar tactics when his people rose up against his repressive regime shortly after the events in Egypt.
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