From right, Prosecutor Norman Farrel and Prosecution counsel Nigel Povoas in The Hague, Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018. (The Daily Star/STL, HO)
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The defense teams representing the Hezbollah-affiliated men accused of involvement in the assassination of Rafik Hariri are scheduled to begin their closing arguments Monday, after which only the final judgment will be left for the trial. Emile Aoun, lead counsel for the defense for Salim Ayyash, is slated to begin first, followed by the defense teams for Hussein Oneissi, Assad Sabra and Hassan Merhi, respectively. After the prosecution concluded its case in February, the Oneissi defense team filed for a "judgment of acquittal," arguing that not enough evidence was presented linking their client to the crime."The prosecution has not proven that Mr. Oneissi had the intent to commit a crime against the state security, or that he knew that an act of terrorism was to be committed," lead counsel Vincent Courcelle-Labrousse said at the time. Ultimately, the trial chamber rejected the motion, forcing the team to continue with the trial and defend their client.The defense teams' closing arguments come after four days of closing arguments from prosecutors and the legal representative of the victims.
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