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Published on Thursday, July 18, 2019

Three get death penalty for killing Scandinavian hikers in Morocco







Photo by Emmanuel Wuyts from FreeImages 


Three Moroccan men who murdered two Scandinavian hikers in the Atlas Mountains have been sentenced to death following an 11-week trial.


Louisa Vesterager Jespersen, 24, from Denmark, and Maren Ueland, 28, from Norway, were found beheaded in their tent in an isolated area near Mount Toubkal, Morocco's highest mountain, while on a trek in December.

During the trial, it emerged that Abdessamad Ejjoud, 25, and Younes Ouaziyad, 27, had beheaded the two women while Rachid Afatti, 33, filmed the murders on his mobile phone.

The verdicts followed petitions on social media for the accused to be executed.

Ejjoud, an underground imam and a street vendor, admitted killing one of the two women in May.

A video appearing to show one of the women being beheaded was shared online by IS supporters and was verified as 'almost certainly real' by Norwegian police.

The three men all said they were IS supporters, although IS has not said it was behind the killings.

The prosecution labelled the three men as 'bloodthirsty monsters' but the defence team said there were 'mitigating circumstances on account of their precarious social conditions and psychological disequilibrium' AFP reported.

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