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Adnan Syed freed after judge vacates murder conviction

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Years after Syed’s conviction for the 1999 murder of Hae Min Lee, the Serial podcast documented the case’s complicated story and unsettling lack of forensic evidence

a:hover]:text-black [&>a]:shadow-underline-gray-63 [&>a:hover]:shadow-underline-black text-gray-63″>Photo by Karl Merton Ferron / Baltimore Sun / Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Adnan Syed was set free on Monday after more than 20 years in prison for being convicted of the murder of his ex-girlfriend, Hae Min Lee, in a case that spawned intense interest after it was documented in the podcast Serial. The New York Times reports Judge Melissa M. Phinn of Baltimore City Circuit overturned Adnan Syed’s murder conviction after prosecutors filed documents questioning the trial and the evidence presented.

According to the Baltimore Sun, the judge ordered Syed unshackled in court and to remain on GPS monitoring pending another trial, while the prosecutors have 30 days to determine whether to try him again or drop the charges.

The judge rejected a request to postpone the decision from a lawyer representing Lee’s family, who said they had not been given adequate notice of the decision.

The Serial podcast’s Twitter account tweeted that the original host, Sarah Koenig, was in the courtroom today and that a new episode will be released on Tuesday.

According to the Sun, prosecutors said the state has known since 1999 of two “alternative suspects” who may be guilty of the crime, who were not disclosed to his defense and include an unnamed serial rapist who has since been convicted of several assaults. The prosecutors also said one of the suspects had threatened Lee prior to her murder, saying they “would make her disappear.”

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