Adnan Syed Returns Home After Prison Release: 'Leftovers Never Tasted So Good'

After over 20 years behind bars serving a life sentence, Adnan Syed — subject of the hit podcast Serial — was freed on Monday when a Baltimore Circuit judge overturned his conviction

One of the first stops Adnan Syed made following his release from prison appears to be the refrigerator.

After over 20 years behind bars serving a life sentence, the 41-year-old was a free man on Monday, Baltimore Circuit Judge Melissa Phinn vacating Syed's 2000 first-degree murder conviction for the 1999 kidnapping and murder of his 18-year-old Baltimore high school classmate and ex-girlfriend, Hae Min Lee.

Hours later, longtime friend Rabia Chaudry shared a video of Syed combing through a refrigerator, looking for something to eat.

In the clip, Syed took out samosas and dumplings from the fridge as he's walked through his options by a loved on. "We got fresh samosas coming though," Chaudry said from off-screen, as Syed tried a dumpling.

"Pretty good," Syed said.

"Leftovers at home never tasted so good!!" Chaudry captioned the post on Twitter, which came with a picture of Syed flashing a peace sign outside the courthouse moments after his release. "We did it. WE FREED ADNAN!"

adnan syed
rabia O'chaudry/twitter

"One last picture and I'm heading home," she later wrote, posting a selfie with Chaudry and another close ally. "Mission accomplished. Exhausted. Thrilled. Thankful. Starving 🤣."

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One more photo of them came on Tuesday morning. "I arise full of joy," Chaudry wrote.

News of Syed's release came after prosecutors filed a motion to vacate his murder conviction, arguing that it was riddled with problems. Prosecutors asked that he receive a new trial, according to motions filed in circuit court.

Since his 2000 conviction, Syed has always maintained his innocence, which was explored in the 2014 podcast Serial and later, an HBO documentary.

Phinn, in an order obtained by PEOPLE on Monday, said that prosecutors failed to turn over evidence to Syed's lawyers that could have helped prove that he didn't kill Lee.

There was also a "substantial and significant probability that the result would have been different," Phinn said, since new evidence came to light since the trial ended more than two decades earlier.

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Adnan Syed. JIM LO SCALZO/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

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State's attorney for Baltimore City Marilyn Mosby said in the motion filed Sept. 14 that "after a nearly year-long investigation by the state and defense" new information was discovered, including "the possible involvement of alternative suspects."

Prosecutors said that they will continue their investigation, and "bring a suspect or suspects to justice," but also are not saying "at this time" that Syed is innocent.

Adnan Syed
Adnan Syed. Karl Merton Ferron/Baltimore Sun/TNS via Getty

"However, for all the reasons set forth below, the State no longer has confidence in the integrity of the conviction," said the office of Mosby, which is overseeing the reinvestigation, in the court papers.

They also asked for Syed to be released on his own recognizance as the investigation continues. "We have spent 23 years fighting the state and now the state is saying they got it wrong, maybe, and the state is saying he did not deserve to be convicted," longtime Syed family friend Rabia Chaudry tells PEOPLE, her voice wavering with emotion. "To not have to fight the state is incredible."

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