'Serial' Subject Adnan Syed Granted Appeal

A Maryland court is allowing Syed to challenge his 1999 murder conviction

Adnan Syed. Photo: Courtesy of Yusuf Syed/AP Photo

The man whose fight to clear his name captivated the nation this fall is getting the chance to challenge his murder conviction.

Adnan Syed, the subject of the wildly successful podcast, Serial, has been granted a leave for appeal, according to a court document Tweeted out by the podcast.

The Maryland Court of Special Appeals ruled in favor of Syed’s request for another trial Friday, agreeing that his attorney Christina Guiterrez ineffectively represented him back in 2000, when he was found guilty of killing his high school ex-girlfriend, Hae Min Lee.

“It’s the first step in a pretty long process, but we’re extremely happy,” Syed’s attorney, C. Justin Brown, told the Baltimore Sun.

Serial, hosted by reporter Sarah Koenig, chronicled the legal process that put Syed, now 33, behind bars – and tried to shed new light on the night of Lee’s murder. With about 1.5 million people listening each week, it was the most downloaded podcast of 2014.

There’s still a long road ahead for Syed: He’ll need to file formal briefings by March 16, and then the State Attorney General’s Office has a month to file its own in opposition. At that point, the court can either grant or deny Syed a new trial in June, or send him back to the circuit court, according to the Sun.

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