Sunday 18 March 2018

Lee Rigby Murder Trial Jury Considers Verdicts

Fusilier Lee Rigby
Fusilier Lee Rigby

Jurors in the trial of two men accused of murdering soldier Lee Rigby in south-east London have retired to consider their verdicts.

Mr Justice Sweeney finished summing up the case at the Old Bailey, before sending the eight women and four men to begin their deliberations.

Michael Adebolajo, 29, and Michael Adebowale, 22, are accused of murdering Fusilier Rigby by running him down in a car and then hacking him to death near Woolwich Barracks on May 22.

They both deny murder and claim that they are "soldiers of Allah", although the judge has made clear that this is no legal defence.

The pair are also accused of the attempted murder of a police officer.

Adebolajo claimed that he ran at marksmen clutching a meat cleaver in a bid to get himself shot.

Adebowale did not give evidence, but his barrister Abbas Lakha QC said in his closing speech that he had brandished an unloaded gun at the officers with the same aim.

Mr Justice Sweeney has told the jury that they must not allow emotion to influence their decision.

He said: "To state the obvious - neither media or internet reporting, or speculation or emotion, can have any part to play in your deliberations.

"Guarding against speculation or emotion entering into your deliberations is particularly important in cases of this type. What's required of you is a cool, calm, careful and dispassionate consideration of the evidence."

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