Judge Bitar releases six people held for Beirut blast

The judge rejected release requests of 19 other detainees, NNA said

  
A view shows the site of the August 4th explosion at Beirut port, Lebanon December 9, 2020.

A view shows the site of the August 4th explosion at Beirut port, Lebanon December 9, 2020.

REUTERS/Mohamed Azakir

BEIRUT: Lead investigator Judge Tarek Bitar ordered Thursday the release of six people detained in connection to the devastating Aug. 4 Beirut Port blast.

According to the state-run National News Agency, those released are: Head of the port’s State Security office Maj. Joseph Naddaf, General Security officer Maj. Charbel Fawaz, Sergeant Majors Elias Chahine and Khaled al-Khari in addition to Johnny Gerges and Mikhael al-Murr.

The judge rejected release requests of 19 other detainees, NNA said.

A total of 25 people who were mostly low and medium level port employees were held in custody since the blast by then lead investigator Judge Fadi Sawwan. The charges still remain unknown.

The Aug. 4 blast killed more than 200 people, injured around 6,000 and left damaged half the capital.

Sawwan was assigned to lead the case but was replaced by Bitar earlier this year after complaints over his handling of the case.

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