Judge drops charges for three in New Mexico compound case

Siraj Ibn Wahhaj faces the death penalty if found guilty of child abuse resulting in death

Siraj Ibn Wahhaj faces the death penalty if found guilty of child abuse resulting in death

Charges against Siraj Ibn Wahhaj and Leveille in connection with the death of a previously missing three-year-old boy remain, Fox News reports. They were withdrawn because prosecutors missed a 10-day period of examination of the evidence.

The authorities charged the five adults after they discovered the children living in filth and squalor.

Prosecutors have other options for pursuing charges, including seeking indictments from a grand jury. Three days later, they found the body of a 3-year-old at the site.

A judge on Wednesday dismissed child neglect charges against three of five people arrested at a remote desert compound in northern New Mexico where 11 children were found living in filth and the body of a 3-year-old boy was discovered. "But every judge in New Mexico takes seriously their responsibility to establish conditions of pretrial release for criminal defendants that will protect public safety and assure a defendant's return to court for future proceedings".

Taos-based District Attorney Donald Gallegos announced on social media Thursday that his office will refile charges or take the case to a grand jury. Allegations of anti-government plotting, jihad and martyrdom at the compound stocked with guns - drawn in part from Federal Bureau of Investigation interviews with children - has done little to persuade judges of any immediate threat to public safety.

She said state prosecutors had not indicated whether they meant to file new charges against the three, who have been accused by police and prosecutors of planning attacks on schools.

Siraj Ibn Wahhaj laughs in court
Siraj Ibn Wahhaj laughs in court

Judge Emilio Chavez dismissed the charges against Subhannah Wahhaj, her husband Lucas Morton and her sister Hujrah Wahhaj, on grounds that a preliminary hearing had not taken place within 10 days after charges were filed against them on August 8 and they were taken into custody.

Authorities say Wahhaj and Leveille denied the boy proper medicine and health care before he died in December 2017 during a religious ritual aimed at casting out demonic spirits.

Georgia police had been on the search for Wahhaj, who they believe illegally fled the state with his son nine months ago. She said they had mistakenly built it there.

"District Judge Emilio Chavez on Wednesday dismissed charges against three of the five defendants, ruling that authorities violated the state's '10-day rule'".

The boy initially was reported missing past year from Jonesboro, Georgia, by his mother after Siraj Ibn Wahhaj said he was taking the child to a park and didn't return. It remains unclear why the prosecution would let such a clear case of child abuse go unpunished, especially in light of the mounting evidence that the group was planning to force the children to conduct terror attacks against American schools and law enforcement. While Backus ordered all five suspects to be released to house arrest and with other strict conditions including Global Positioning System monitoring, they all remained in custody because they were not able to meet the requirements. The exact cause of death has not been determined by forensic specialists.

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