Hundreds of people rally in front of the Egyptian embassy in Rome on Feb. 25, 2016, to demand justice for the death of Italian student Giulio Regeni
Giuseppe Ciccia—Pacific Press/LightRocket/Getty Images
March 31, 2016 12:20 AM EDT

Under pressure from overseas security agencies demanding to know the truth behind an Italian student’s gruesome killing in Cairo on Wednesday announced the formation of a new investigation team to pursue further leads.

Prosecutor General Nabil Sadek said the new team would be based in his office, Egyptian daily al-Ahram reported.

The student, Giulio Regeni, was found dead beside a road on the outskirts of Cairo on Feb. 3, a week after his disappearance in the Egyptian capital. His body appeared to show signs of gruesome torture, with his mother saying in a news conference reported on by the BBC that she “only recognized him because of the tip of his nose.”

Regeni, a student at Cambridge University, had been researching trade unions in Egypt when he was abducted and killed. Egyptian authorities have blamed his murder on a criminal gang that targets foreigners while posing as policemen, and said the four main suspects were killed in a shootout with security forces a week ago. A bag containing the 28-year-old’s belongings, including his passport and university ID, has been found at the house of a sister of one of the suspects.

But Italian authorities, as well as the Regeni family, have expressed skepticism at the official version of events, citing “inconsistencies” and fueling speculation that Egyptian security forces were involved in the death — a claim Egypt has strongly denied.


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