London, Sep 7 (IANS) A Saudi Arabian court has commuted the death sentences of five of the eight people convicted for the 2018 murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in a “rogue operation” as his family has pardoned them, reports said on Monday.
The five men will now serve jail terms of 20 years each, the BBC reported citing local media.
The jail terms of seven to 10 years for three other accused have been upheld.
Khashoggi, who was openly critical of the Saudi government, was killed inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey’s Istanbul by a team of Saudi agents, which the kingdom’s government termed a “rogue operation” after the incident came to light and caused an international uproar.
He had gone to the consulate to get some documents he needed to marry his Turkish fiancee.
Khashoggi’s body was never found and was likely dismembered and disposed of piecemeal.
The Saudi government had in 2019 put 11 individuals, whose names were not disclosed on trial, and eight of them were convicted while the others were acquitted.
The five said to have participated in the strangling of Khashoggi were sentenced to death while three others were handed down prison terms for covering up the crime.