The terrorist who drove a truck into a group of people in New York in 2017 has been found guilty across the board. That was the verdict of a popular jury in the Manhattan federal court, US media reported. Eight people were killed in the attack, including Ann-Laure Decadt (31) from Oostnieuwkerke in West Flanders. The jury has yet to decide on the sentence: he risks the death penalty.

    The prosecution had formulated a total of 28 charges against perpetrator Sayfullo Saipov. He was charged with murder, attempted murder and membership of a terrorist organization, among other things.

    After about seven hours of deliberation, the twelve jurors ruled that Saipov is guilty across the board. In the coming days, the trial will continue with debates on the sentence. The 34-year-old Uzbek risks the death penalty.

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    Belgian victims

    During the attack in the Manhattan district, the Uzbek drove into pedestrians and cyclists with a rented pick-up truck on October 31, 2017. Eight people were killed and ten seriously injured. It was New York’s deadliest attack since 9/11.

    Among the fatalities was also a Belgian, 31-year-old Ann-Laure Decadt from Staden. She left behind two young children. She was in New York on a city trip with her mother and two sisters. Another three other Belgians, a family consisting of father, mother and son, were injured.

    Ann-Laure Decadt, 31, was one of the fatal victims.

    Ann-Laure Decadt, 31, was one of the fatal victims. © Florian Van Eenoo photonews

    Capital punishment

    The twelve-member jury has yet to decide whether he will be executed or sentenced to life in prison. There must be a unanimous agreement for a death penalty to be imposed.

    It is the first federal trial to seek the death penalty since President Joe Biden took office. That the death penalty is demanded at the federal level is very exceptional, especially in Manhattan. The last time there were executions there was in the 1950s, when two people were sentenced to death for espionage.

    Widower (39) of terror victim Ann-Laure (31) testifies at trial in New York: “Little sons say that ‘crook’ should die because he killed mom” (+)

    AP

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