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In lieu of hearing from a witness, whose testimony it had postponed following a defense request, the prosecution resorted to presenting ancillary documentary evidence, primarily related to a 2004 furniture purchase by defendant Hassan Merhi, to establish his alleged ownership of a purple network number (Purple 231) used to help plot the assassination.While Aouini had said Merhi had never used Purple 231 to call his family mobile number, she said there had in fact been one call in September 2003 . She noted the prosecution was not interested in co-locating the two numbers, but rather, using the family mobile number to prove Merhi owned Purple 231 . The prosecution said Tuesday that it expected 187 additional witnesses to testify. Combined with the defense's repeated delays, the prosecution's generally plodding presentation, and its constantly rotating cast of inexperienced trial counsel (in the last month, the prosecution has had four lawyers lead questioning for the first time), the prognosis for a speedy and efficient trial seems dim.
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