Nightly News | June 02, 2012
>>> of last year's uprising that forced hosni mubarak from power and brought him to justice, there is outrage over how that has played out. let's show you the scene now in tahrir square. peaceful crowds continue to grow. thousands took to the streets after a court sentences mubarak to life in prison , but spared him the death penalty for his failing to stop the killing of protesters last year. richard engel joins us from cairo with more. good evening.
>> reporter: the protesters are continuing, lester, but so far, they are peaceful. today, hosni mubarak was sentenced to 25 years in prison in this country that's a life sentence . he's 84 years old. his health isn't good. his biggest miscalculation may have been not leaving when he had a chance. mubarak was rolled into the courthouse on a stretcher to hear his fate. he sat in a cage. his body language revealing disgust and frustration. arms crossed. sunglasses, stone faced. the judge's tone was immediately harsh. the judge praised the mart irs of the revolution. then, the sentence. it is life in prison , he said. pandemonium erupted outside the courtroom. joy, but some wanted more. the death penalty . this was the reaction at a coffee shop a few miles away . what a fall for the man who came to office as he stood next to his predecessor. mubarak proved to be a survivor. he knew five american presidents .
>> he preserved the peace in the region. he led egypt through many transformations and was a good friend of the united states . it was an authoritarian state, but he believed in a troubled region with the threats that egypt faced, he had to run things.
>> reporter: but as he got older, it got worse. and over a year ago, egyptians rose against him. mubarak was found guilty today in the deaths of more than 800 demonstrators. in cairo tonight, thousands called mubarak a dictator who drove the country to ruin. these protesters are angry. they wanted a harsher sentence for mubarak and more done against his sons former security official. for most here, mubarak is the only president they ever knew, but tonight in cairo , there seems to be no sympathy for the man. and now, sentenced to die in prison. the protests in this country are being led by the muslim brotherhood and it's hoping to use this moment to gain momentum which it hopes will carry it through elections to the next president in two weeks.
>> richard, thanks.