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Judge was right to reject Saudi bond money, Missouri attorney general says

Updated: 2013-06-12T05:54:54Z

By DONALD BRADLEY

The Kansas City Star

A Missouri circuit judge was right to keep a murder defendant in jail even though bond money for his release had been deposited with the court, Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster said.

Ziyad Abid, charged with killing a Warrensburg bar owner, could have been released if the $2 million had come through a bondsman as directed by the court, but the cash coming directly from the government of Saudi Arabia did not meet requirements to best ensure that Abid would appear for trial, Koster wrote to the Missouri Court of Appeals late Monday.

Koster also supported Circuit Judge Michael Wagner’s concern that Abid, a Saudi national, could be deported before his murder case is resolved.

Abid, 24, is charged in the killing of William Blaine Whitworth, who was shot to death Sept. 1, 2012, in the driveway of his Warrensburg home. Reginald Singletary Jr., a former bouncer at a bar Whitworth operated, admitted to the shooting and told authorities Abid hired him to do it.

Abid had lost his student visa, thus making him subject to deportation.

An earlier judge allowed bond for Abid. That judge then retired and the case went to Wagner, who ordered that the bond must be surety only, meaning through a licensed bail bond agent.

Cash coming directly from the Saudi government did not meet that requirement, Koster wrote.

Abid’s defense lawyers had asked the Missouri Court of Appeals to intervene in the matter. An appeals panel is expected to rule soon.

To reach Donald Bradley, call 816-234-4182 or send email to dbradley@kcstar.com.

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