Lawyers file appeal against Jordanian coup plot sentences

Lawyers file appeal against Jordanian coup plot sentences
Defence lawyers representing Jordanian former royal aides Basem Awadallah and Sherif Hassan Bin Zaid have filed an appeal against their sentences for involvement in an alleged coup plot.
2 min read
08 August, 2021
Sherif Awadallah and Sherif Hassan Bin Zaid were sentenced last month [Getty]

Lawyers representing two former Jordanian royal aides convicted on charges of sedition and incitement in the wake of a reported coup attempt last April filed an appeal on Sunday against their conviction.

Last month, a Jordanian state security court sentenced Bassem Awadallah, the former head of Jordan’s royal court, and Sherif Hassan Bin Zaid, a member of the royal family, to 15 years in prison over the alleged plot to destabilise the Western-allied monarchy.

Muhammad Al-Afif, the defence lawyer for Awadallah, told The New Arab's Arabic-language service that he and a lawyer for Bin Zaid had filed a 32-page petition against the ruling and sentence of the two defendants.

Al-Afif said he expects to receive a verdict from the Court of Cassation, the highest judicial body in Jordan, in a month or less.

Awadallah and Sherif Hassan Bin Zaid are alleged to have conspired with Prince Hamzah, half-brother of King Abdullah II, to bring down the monarchy, seeking foreign assistance to do so.

The three were among at least 17 people arrested over the alleged conspiracy.

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Prince Hamzah - whom Abdullah stripped of the title of crown prince in 2004 - has been a vocal critic of the monarchy, accusing Jordan's leadership of corruption, nepotism and authoritarian rule.

Hamzah was never formally charged. Instead, Jordan's Prime Minister Bisher Al-Khasawneh had announced that he would not be tried, and that his issue would "be resolved within the royal family."