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Hattar murder trial opens; defendants plead not guilty

By JT - Oct 19,2016 - Last updated at Oct 19,2016

AMMAN — The trial of the defendants in Jordanian writer Nahed Hattar’s murder has commenced, State Security Court Attorney General Brig. Gen. Ziad Adwan said on Tuesday.

In addition to the main defendant, another is on trial on charges of selling the weapon to the suspected shooter, Adwan said, and a third is being tried on suspicion of facilitating the deal, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported. 

The defendants pleaded not guilty and the court heard from a witness for the prosecution, he added. 

The main defendant in the case was charged with four crimes: committing terrorist acts that led to the death of a person, conducting terrorist acts that could lead to turmoil, premeditated murder and possessing an unlicensed weapon, Adwan told Petra. 

The second and the third defendants were charged with participating in a terrorist act by using a weapon that led to the death of a person. 

Hattar, facing trial for sharing a caricature that was considered insulting to religious beliefs, was on his way to attend a hearing when he was shot dead in front of the courthouse in late September.

The caricature depicted a bearded man in heaven, smoking and in bed with women, asking a figure resembling God to bring him wine and cashews.


The main defendant has been identified as Riad Abdullah, 49, a resident of east Amman.

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