On March 11, an Egyptian ferry owner that sank in the Red Sea in 2006 was sentenced by a Cairo court to 7 years in jail.

More than 1,000 people were killed in the incident in one of the deadliest disasters in modern maritime history.

Mamduh Ismail, a former lawmaker in Egypt and owner of the 36-year-old Al-Salam ferry, was sentenced in absentia over the sinking of the Al-Salam ferry.

Ismail is reportedly in London.

In a June 2008 trial he was found guilty and on Wednesday the court also sentenced also sentenced 2 other defendants to 3 years in jail each over the tragedy, but acquitted 2.

The Al-Salam sank in the middle of the Red Sea on February 3, 2006 as it was carrying more than 1 400 people from Saudi Arabia to the Egyptian port of Safaga, where the initial trial was held.

In the 2008 trial, only Salaheddin Gomaa, the captain of another ferry, the Saint Catherine, was convicted. He was jailed for 6 months for failing to come to the assistance of the Al-Salam Boccaccio 98.

The majority of the victims came from poor families in southern Egypt, who were on their way home with month’s worth of savings for their needy relatives.

The initial trial outcome left dozens of grief-stricken relatives fuming and called for a retrial.

Ismail had denied responsibility for the disaster, and blamed the captain of the Al-Salam, who went down with his ship, for overestimating the crew's ability to fight a fire that had broken out on board.

In June 2006, Ismail was ordered to pay $57m into a fund to compensate victims of the disaster and in return, a freeze on his assets was lifted.