'Serial' Podcast Subject Scores Court Victory

Alibi witness will finally get to testify
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 19, 2015 4:18 AM CDT
Shamim Syed, left, whose son Adnan was convicted for the 1999 murder of his ex-girlfriend, poses for a photograph alongside her son Yusuf in her Baltimore home.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
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(Newser) – Adnan Syed, the Maryland man whose murder conviction is the subject of the hit podcast Serial, has scored a major court victory in his quest for a retrial. The Maryland Court of Appeals has ruled that a lower court should hear testimony from Asia McClain, a witness who says she saw Syed in a library at the time he allegedly murdered high school girlfriend Hae Min Lee, ThinkProgress reports. The court declared that the defense in his trial for the 1999 murder was "constitutionally ineffective," Forbes reports.

"This is what we wanted from the beginning," C. Justin Brown, Syed's attorney, tells the Baltimore Sun. "It's the right thing to do. It's in the interest of justice that Asia McClain be allowed to testify in court." It's not clear why Syed's original defense attorney didn't call on McClain, who Syed's supporters say is more credible than the witness who helped convict him, the Sun reports. The move to remand the case to Baltimore circuit court doesn't guarantee the 34-year-old a new trial, ThinkProgress notes, but it has put in motion proceedings that could lead to one.

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