He does not care much about red lines. Egyptian Journalist and author Ibrahim Essa broke the record as the most legally pursued Egyptian journalist during the rules of ousted President Hosni Mubarak and current President Mohammed Mursi.
“I say that the president has become the God Pharaoh. There are people who say that he became a ruler by God's order. And you know what the ruler by god's law is like?,” Esa said in one of his shows.
“If the president is the ruler by god's law, I plead you Dr. Mursi tell us when will you ban Meloukhia? When will you ban Meloukhia? Mr. president?,” he added.
Essa had his newspapers shut down, he was sentenced to jail and some of his books were banned. He made occasional appearances on various television channels. He would appear and disappear based on decisions by owners of television channels.
Under Hosni Mubarak, about 65 lawsuits were brought against him.
“Under Mursi, we are talking here about seven months, there are 120 complaints, and there are two cases. One with the administrative court to stop this program. The other case concerns mocking religions,” Essa told Al Arabiya.
“We got tyranny and we got a gift with Tyranny, which is religious tyranny,” Essa said mockingly said about the state of the post-revolutionary Egypt.
Essa became the editor-in-chief of Ad-Dustour Newspaper in 1995, an opposition newspaper when the margin of freedom was very slim. The paper was suspended in 1998 for publishing a statement by an Islamist group that was seen as encouraging sectarian strife.
The Newspaper was launched in 2004, but the return of the newspaper could not be tolerated by the previous regime.
In 2006, Essa was sentenced to one year in jail for spreading rumors about Mubarak’s health.
Eissa received a jail sentence in 2008 but was eventually pardoned by Mubarak.
In 2012, he was sacked from his post as the editor-in-chief of Ad-Dustour Newspaper
Under Mursi, dozens of complaints were brought against Essa and many of them were accusing him of mocking religions.