Apostasy, the abandonment of Islam, can be subdivided into the act of apostasy, and its legal consequences. In Egyptian case law of the past fifty years, only the latter plays a role. The act of apostasy hardly needs to be scrutinized by the courts since it is almost never related to religious conviction, but to legal issues like marriage or inheritance. This was different, however, in the 1996 ruling of the Court of Cassation against the Egyptian Muslim scholar Nasr Abu Zayd: here, the behavior of the accused was the central issue. Still, it will be argued, based on the legal notion of public policy that plays a central role in the issue of apostasy, that the court's ruling was consistent with Egyptian jurisprudence in this matter.