Cairo, Egypt -- Former president Hosni Mubarak and his two sons were convicted Wednesday of plundering the state treasury of millions of dollars, with the ex-leader sentenced to three years in prison and his sons to four years each.

The verdict by a Cairo court came more than three years after the revolution that drove the 86-year-old Mubarak from power following almost three decades of absolute rule. During his reign, he and his family lived a life of luxury amid Egypt's overwhelming poverty, with private mansions and palaces furnished and renovated with public funds, according to prosecutors.

The three were fined the equivalent of about $3 million, and ordered to reimburse the state an additional $17.9 million. They had paid back some diverted funds before the proceedings began.

Mubarak has been in custody at a military hospital in Cairo, and was expected to remain there. His lawyers will likely argue that he is too ill and frail to serve prison time. The ex-leader still faces a retrial on charges related to the deaths of hundreds of protesters during the Tahrir Square uprising of 2011.

Mubarak and his sons -- Gamal, whom he had tried to anoint as his successor, and Alaa, a business magnate -- can appeal Wednesday's verdict. If the sentence is upheld, they will receive credit for time already served. Four co-defendants were acquitted.

In the defendant's caged dock, Mubarak sat impassive in dark glasses and a suit and tie, his hair still dyed jet-black, as the judge sternly lectured him over embezzling public funds while the country faced such enormous needs. His sons, who also face additional graft charges, were wearing white prison uniforms.


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Egyptians were initially transfixed by images of a once all-powerful leader brought into court in the two cases -- at times so enfeebled he was carried in on a stretcher. But the shock value has diminished as the legal proceedings dragged on for months, then years.