The Daily Telegraph

Call to reopen case of ‘killer’ who inspired crime podcast


THE man convicted of killing his former high school girlfriend in a case that inspired the popular true crime podcast series, Serial, should have his case reopened, prosecutor­s have said.

The state’s attorney for Baltimore in Maryland said in a motion filed in circuit court that the defence had found new evidence of Adnan Syed’s innocence, including details on the possible involvemen­t of two other suspects.

Teenager Hae Min Lee was strangled and buried in Baltimore’s Leakin Park in 1999. Syed, then 17 years old but charged as an adult, received a life sentence plus 30 years for premeditat­ed murder.

Prosecutor­s now quote evidence that two other suspects may have been involved, either separately or together, and that they were not ruled out during initial police investigat­ions. Their names were not made public, but one suspect was accused and convicted of rape and sexual assault after Syed’s trial.

The Wall Street Journal reported that prosecutor­s found a document in the state’s trial file that detailed one person’s statement that said one of the suspects had a motive to kill Lee. According to the court filing, the suspect said “he would make her [Lee] disappear. He would kill her”.

Prosecutor­s said this “was not available” to the defence at Syed’s trial back in 2000 and “it would have provided persuasive support substantia­ting the defence that another person was responsibl­e”. Syed, now 42, could get a new trial or go free after serving more than 20 years for a killing he maintained he did not commit. His case was covered in Serial in 2014, which raised questions about his guilt. In 2018, a special appeals court ruled Syed deserved a new trial but this was reversed by Maryland’s highest court.

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