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Germany releases 9/11 convict on bail pending appeals

[JURIST] Germany's Federal Constitutional Court [official website, in German] on Tuesday ordered the release of Moroccan-born Mounir al-Motassadeq [BBC profile; JURIST news archive], who was convicted [JURIST report] last year in connection with the Sept. 11 attacks [JURIST news archive], while appeals of the conviction [JURIST report] are pending. Motassadeq was convicted of participating in a terrorist cell and sentenced to seven years, but both Motassadeq and prosecutors have challenged the decision, with prosecutors appealing Motassadeq's acquittal on accessory to murder charges and asking for a 15-year sentence. The court on Tuesday ruled that a decision to withdraw Motassadeq's bail during the appeals process was unconstitutional [ruling, press release in German].

Motassadeq was convicted on both counts in 2004, but the German Supreme Court [official website, in German] threw out [JURIST report] the conviction, citing insufficient evidence as justification for retrial. AP has more. DPA has local coverage.

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