British Man Freed in UAE – level 3
In May in the United Arab Emirates, a court convicted 31-year-old Matthew Hedges, a British Ph.D. student, to a 25-year sentence for spying. Hedges contested that he was there to study for his degree.
A British government official said that at the hearing, Hedges was not allowed to have his lawyer, the hearing took five minutes, and the British media was banned. The verdict shocked his family and the UK government. Officials questioned their ties to the country, with one asking why they should want to defend the UAE if Hedges was kept in jail in these circumstances.
The UAE’s king recently decided to release Hedges among another 785 prisoners due to his family’s request for clemency and ‘in consideration to the close ties and historical relationship’ between the two countries.
Difficult words: convict (find someone is guilty of a crime), contest (argue against someone), hearing (a legal proceeding), verdict (a decision on if someone is innocent or guilty of a crime), tie (a relationship), clemency (mercy), consideration (thinking a lot about something).
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