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OJ takes stand in bid for new hearing over kidnap

OJ Simpson has begun testifying in his bid for a new trial in the Las Vegas armed robbery and kidnap case that put him behind bars more than four years ago.

The 65-year-old former American football star and actor had the US enthralled when he was acquitted in 1995 of the stabbing deaths of his ex-wife and her friend.

The focus is on his trial over a 2007 hotel room confrontation at gunpoint with two sports memorabilia dealers who had Simpson footballs and photos.

When he went to trial in 2008, he did not testify – a decision that one of his lawyers said was pushed on him by another attorney he trusted so completely that he took his bad advice.

"He's been wanting to tell his story," said lawyer Ozzie Fumo.

Simpson is serving nine to 33 years for armed robbery, kidnap and other charges. He has said, and is likely to repeat, that he never saw any guns.

Irish Independent