Saudi Arabia Sentences 5 People to Death for Jamal Khashoggi Murder

The Washington Post journalist was killed in October 2018

Jamal Khashoggi
A man holds a poster of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi during a protest organized by members of the Turkish-Arabic Media Association at the entrance to Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul, Turkey/Getty Images

Saudi Arabia sentenced five people to death for the killing of  Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi on Monday, according to the Associated Press.

While 11 people were on trial for the murder, their names have not been made public and the verdicts of all those sentenced are preliminary and can be appealed, the AP reported.

In addition, three top officials — Saud al-Qahtani, Ahmed al-Assiri and Mohammad al-Otaibi — were cleared of the killing, CNN reported.

Khashoggi, a Washington Post opinion columnist critical of the ruling Saudi regime, was killed on Oct. 2, 2018, after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. The Saudi regime initially maintained that it had no idea what happened to Khashoggi after he entered the consulate, despite his disappearance. After an international outcry, Saudi authorities eventually conceded Khashoggi was murdered inside the consulate — but denied Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the royal family were behind in.

In November 2018, Canadian Prime Minster Justin Trudeau revealed intelligence officers had heard the Turkish audio recording of Khashoggi being killed at the Saudi consulate.

“Yes,” Trudeau said, when asked at a press conference in Paris if Canadian authorities had heard the recordings. Trudeau’s announcement was the first time a western leader had confirmed the tape existed, after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he’d shared it with several countries.