Riyadh, Saudi Arabia – The final decision in the Khashoggi case has been reached by the court. With the Khashoggi family announcing pardons, the court on Monday spared five individuals from execution. Among the eight Saudi nationals convicted of the murder, five have been awarded 20 years in prison, one a 10 year sentence, while the last two will serve up to 7 years in prison.
The trial has been subject to much criticism and debate, as one UN Investigator noted that no senior officials had been found guilty nor was anyone convicted for ordering the murder. At this point the only question raised by such light sentences is the independence of the court itself. Before his death, Jamal Khashoggi, a critic and columnist for the Washington post wrote articles about Saudi Arabian Crown prince Muhammad bin Salman. He was killed and butchered inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey leading to an International outcry for the slain journalist.