adnan syed alibi witness Testifies At Hearing For New Trial

Adnan Syed alibi witness, Asia McClain, has testified for a second day at his hearing for a new trial.

As Popdust previously reported, Syed, 34, was 19-years old when he was convicted of murdering his ex girlfriend, and fellow student Hae Min Lee, back in 1999, and he has always maintained his innocence.

State Vs Adnan Syed—Murder Case Fabrication, Baltimore Style

The case sparked national attention last year when NPR reporter and This American Life producer Sarah Koenig made it the focus of her hugely successful podcast, Serial, which attracted over 5 million listeners.

There were a number of serious flaws in the investigation and Serial raised legitimate questions to be answered by Baltimore PD regarding their treatment of the case.

Adnan Syed Attorney Says New Phone Evidence Should Overturn Murder Conviction

In addition, Syed has argued that his trial attorney, Cristina Gutierrez, made a series of mistakes, including failing to speak McClain, who maintains she saw Syed in the library at the time he is accused of murdering Lee.

Adnan Syed alibi witness

McClain testified yesterday and today, as part of a three-day hearing at Baltimore Circuit Court, and stood firmly by her alibi.

Adnan Syed Case Dissected—What ACTUALLY Happened The Day Hae Lee Was Murdered?

According to the Baltimore Sun, McClain told the packed court that defense attorneys never spoke to her about her claim that she saw Syed at the Woodlawn library on January 13, 1999, for 20 minutes at around 2:15 p.m.

That’s the time that prosecutors maintain Syed was strangling Lee to death, in a Best Buy car park across town. So, it was no surprise that McClain also testified to a prosecutor having dismissed her potential alibi as “irrelevant.”

Undisclosed—So THIS Is Why Jay Kept Lying His Ass Off About That Day With Adnan

McClain wrote a letter to Syed, following his arrest, offering to testify to his whereabouts at the time of Hae's murder, but never heard back from any of his defense team.

In court today, Deputy Attorney General Thiru Vignarajah grilled McClain about the letter, claiming a friend of McClain's told cops that Syed had actually written it himself, then sent it to McClain to type up and send back to him.

Serial—Bowe Bergdahl, Cowardly Deserter Or Brave Whistleblower?

McClain denied the claim, insisting she was the original author of the letter, and that Vignarajah’s information was based on classroom gossip.

Cristina Gutierrez's defense of Adnan Syed

The majority of Wednesday’s testimony centered on the competence of Gutierrez, who died in 2004.

Two of the attorney’s former associates claimed Gutierrez was falling apart both mentally and physically at the time of Syed’s trial, and that her work standards, and judgement, had dropped significantly—testimony that Vignarajah worked hard to shoot down.

Undisclosed Breaks Down Hae’s Last Day, Casts More Doubt On Adnan Syed’s Guilt

Vignarajah told retired Judge Martin P. Welch, who is residing over the hearing, that in addition to proving Gutierrez made questionable decisions—such as not following up on McClain’s potential alibi—the defense also need to prove that she acted incompetently, and provided her client with a level of service that was ”constitutionally deficient" and "below the standard of conduct."

He urged Welch to deny the request for a retrial, claiming, "Mr. Syed was convicted on the basis of overwhelming evidence.

“Mr. Syed was convicted because he did it, and the state proved it."

Undisclosed—Did Jay Lie About Adnan Killing Hae, Purely To Save His Own Ass?

The hearing continues tomorrow.

For more entertainment, world, music and pop culture updates and news, follow Max Page on Twitter

serial bowe bergdahl deserter whistleblower

When it comes to the second season of Serial, one thing is for sure—listeners are likely to be every bit as divided in their opinions, as they were about the innocence or guilt of Adnan Syed, the subject of season one’s hugely popular podcast.

As Sarah Koenig detailed last week, Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, fully admits walking off base and into the wilds of Afghanistan back in July 2009—but, what’s contentious is the reason why he left his post—he’s been painted as a cowardly deserter, however, the 29-year-old maintains that he’s actually a whistleblower, or would have been, if he hadn’t been captured by the Taliban, and held hostage for five long years.

Serial—Bowe Bergdahl Taliban Capture Story Is Like Adnan Syed's, But On Steroids

Bergdahl’s disappearance sparked a massive, unprecedented manhunt, at great financial cost to the U.S.—in addition to the death of six of his fellow soldiers, and uncountable civilians—and, not surprisingly, the Army is pissed.

So pissed in fact, that Gen. Robert Abrams, the commander of U.S. Army Forces Command, announced on Monday that Bergdahl will be facing a general court-martial, on charges of desertion and “misbehavior before the enemy by endangering the safety of a command, unit or place.”

Inside The Tragic World Of The Dancing Boys Of Afghanistan

It's the highest charge that can be brought against him, and carries a possible life sentence, or even the death penalty (although that's highly unlikely in this case).

Given the fact that Bergdahl was held prisoner by the Taliban for five years, some may think he’s already been punished enough—the officer overseeing his preliminary hearing certainly thought so, he recommended Bergdahl be referred to a special court-martial and face no jail time at all—however, when you consider the sheer scale of the manhunt his disappearance sparked, it’s easy to understand why many military personnel are out for blood.

Meet Paradise Sorouri—Afghanistan’s (Absolutely Amazing) First Female Rapper

In yesterday’s podcast, Koenig spoke to several of Bergdahl’s fellow soldiers, as well as Afghan reporter, Sami Yousafzai, former U.S. Army Major Jason Dempsey, who was stationed in Afghanistan at the time, and even the Taliban, in her bid to dive deeper into what went down in the days and weeks following Bergdahl’s disappearance.

Bergdahl’s decision to walk off base immediately set off a DUSTWUN—Duty Status, Whereabouts Unknown soldier—alarm, forcing an entire battalion of soldiers out into Taliban enemy grounds, unable to wash or sleep or eat a full meal for weeks at a time, as they hunted for him.

Undisclosed—So THIS Is Why Jay Kept Lying His Ass Off About That Day With Adnan

It’s easy to see why many of those soldiers are angry at Bergdahl—to say the least—in fact, several of them told Koenig that if they had found him they would have wanted to have shot him for placing so many people’s lives in danger.

Which kinda makes you think, maybe it was just as well for Bergdahl that he did get captured by the Taliban, who at least fully appreciated the value of keeping him alive, as a financial and political bargaining tool—even likening him to a “golden chicken" during an interview with Yousafzai.

Adnan Syed Attorney Says New Phone Evidence Should Overturn Murder Conviction

The circumstances surrounding Bergdahl’s capture could prove key to either backing-up, or debunking, his claim that he walked off base to garner media attention so he could go public with concerns he had about Army policy and leadership.

Bergdahl has maintained that he was captured by the Taliban in the open countryside—as he attempted to make his way to FOB Sharana, gathering "intelligence" on the way—that a bunch of Taliban fighters appeared on motorbikes from seemingly nowhere,  surrounded him, and took him hostage.

Undisclosed: State Vs Adnan Syed—Murder Case Fabrication, Baltimore Style

However, the Taliban tells a different story—they claim they were tipped off by locals that an American was hiding out in a Kochi (a large tent that nomadic tribes live in) and that they went there to capture him.

As Koenig points out, if the Taliban is telling the truth, and if he was hiding out with nomads—and that’s obviously a big IF—it could seriously damage Bergdahl’s whistleblower story, and make it appear much more likely that he WAS in fact trying to desert, rather than “seek out intelligence” on his way to FOB Sharana as he alleges.

Adnan Syed Case Dissected—What ACTUALLY Happened The Day Hae Lee Was Murdered?

One thing is for sure though—after playing a protracted cat and mouse game with the U.S. Army, back and forth across Afghanistan, the Taliban finally managed to get Bergdahl over the border and into Pakistan—and, that’s where Koenig will be continuing from next week.

For more entertainment, world, music and pop culture updates and news, follow Max Page on Twitter

serial bowe bergdahl taliban capture

Serial is back, focusing on a whole new subject matter—which, if the first episode is anything to go by, is like Adnan Syed’s story......on steroids.

For the second season of the hugely successful podcast, investigative journalist, Sarah Koenig is focusing on the mysterious disappearance of U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl in Afghanistan, and his subsequent capture by the Taliban.

Serial—Bowe Bergdahl, Cowardly Deserter Or Brave Whistleblower?

Bergdahl spent five long years being held hostage—and, initially, when he was brought home to Hailey, Idaho, he was greeted with fanfare—but, his homecoming was soon tarnished, and Bergdahl was turned into a traitorous deserter by the media, as the supposed “true” story, and the purported details surrounding his disappearance, came to light.

But, if there’s one lesson to be learned from the first season of Serial, it’s that the details of real life events and people’s actions—and the results that stem from them, are rarely black and white, right and wrong—and, the story of Bowe Bergdahl proves to be no exception.

Undisclosed: State Vs Adnan Syed—Murder Case Fabrication, Baltimore Style

Bergdahl’s release back in May 2014, was controversial from the get go, with the Obama administration coming under fire from the GOP after details of the deal that secured his freedom came to light—five Guantanamo Bay prisoners were let go in exchange for Bergdahl.

Criticism grew yet further however, after it came to light that Bergdahl had purposely deserted his post, and seemingly willingly walked into the arms of the Taliban.

Adnan Syed Case Dissected—What ACTUALLY Happened The Day Hae Lee Was Murdered?

Back in March, the 29-year-old was charged with desertion and misbehavior before the enemy, he remains on active duty while awaiting trial, and if convicted he faces a court martial and the possibility of life in prison.

Bergdahl has not spoken to the media since his release, but has been in close contact with filmmaker Mark Boal, who wrote and produced The Hurt Locker and Zero Dark Thirty.

Undisclosed—So THIS Is Why Jay Kept Lying His Ass Off About That Day With Adnan

Boal recorded their conversations, and it’s through these tapes that we are able to hear Bergdahl tell his story, in his own words, for the first time.

The first episode of Serial’s second season, titled DUSTWUN—or duty status, whereabouts unknown—details the events surrounding Bergdahl’s decision to leave his base, taking just a compass and a bottle of water with him.

Undisclosed Addendum 2—Could Hae’s Secret Diary Hold The Key To Adnan’s Innocence?

According to Bergdahl, the accusations that he was a deserter are unfounded—he claims that he’s actually a whistleblower, and that he chose to abandon his post, and wander into enemy grounds, in hopes of sparking a massive manhunt, with the belief that would provide him with the media spotlight he required to go public with concerns he claims he had about his unit’s leadership.

It’s a truly bizarre story, to say the least—and, Bergdahl admits that he quickly came to realize the gravity of the situation within pretty much minutes of leaving base and wandering into Afghanistan, back in June 2009.

Undisclosed Breaks Down Hae’s Last Day, Casts More Doubt On Adnan Syed’s Guilt

"I'm going, 'Good grief, I'm in over my head,’” Bergdahl recalls thinking at the time.

"Suddenly, it really starts to sink in that I really did something bad. Or, not bad, but I really did something serious."

Adnan Syed— Legal Victory As He Wins Chance To Call Alibi Witness

Indeed.

Episode two delves deeper into Bergdahl’s purported motives for walking away, and, just like Adnan Syed’s story before him, one thing is for sure—keep an open mind, because, often, the truth is way way stranger than fiction.

Adnan Syed Attorney Says New Phone Evidence Should Overturn Murder Conviction

For more entertainment, world, music and pop culture updates and news, follow Max Page on Twitter

Adnan Syed, whose case, as Popdust previously reported, has been the subject of the hugely popular Podcasts Serial and the fascinating follow up Undisclosed, got good news on Monday in the form of an important legal victory regarding his case.

Syed was 19 when he was convicted of murdering his ex girlfriend and fellow student Hae Min Lee back in 1999, and he has always maintained his innocence.  The case sparked national attention last year when NPR reporter and This American Life producer Sarah Koenig made it the focus of her new Podcast, Serial, which attracted over 5 million listeners.

The interest in Syed, and whether he was wrongfully convicted, has been the subject of huge online discussion and more evidence has come to light since Serial's broadcast ended.  This has led to family friend and attorney, Rabia Chaudry and fellow attorneys Susan Simpson and Colin Miller producing a follow up Podcast, Undisclosed, which is currently broadcasting every two weeks.

There were serious flaws in the investigation and legitimate questions to be answered by Baltimore PD regarding their treatment of the case.  Syed has argued that his trial attorney, Cristina Gutierrez made a series of mistakes on his case, including failing to speak to a crucial witness and later ignoring his request to seek a plea deal.

Well on Monday, Syed got a big break in his fight for a new trial. The Maryland Court of Special Appeals agreed to send his case back to a lower court so that he can file a request to reopen the case.

This is hugely important, as Syed's legal team want an affidavit by a witness who gives him a potential alibi to be considered—this referral to a lower court opens the door to her testimony being included in the appeal he has pending.  The account of Asia McClain was never raised by his defence at trial—despite Syed urging his lawyer to follow it up (which is one of the reasons behind his claim of ineffective counsel).  McClain states that she was with Syed in a library at the time the prosecution assert Lee was killed.  She also claims she was discouraged from attending Syed's original post conviction hearings in 2012.  The court also granted a stay of the appeal (giving time for the new evidence to be included), stating that it is "in the interest of justice".

McClain’s attorney said

“If subpoenaed by either party, Ms McClain, as she’s always wanted to do, will fulfil her obligation to testify truthfully to any question asked of her”.

Rabia Chaudry told CNN affiliate WBAL;

"We get to go back into post-conviction, like we did three years ago, basically bring in Asia and the court can then decide if the attorney messed up by not bringing in the alibi witness."

The circuit court still has to decide whether to reopen the post-conviction proceedings. But Syed is pleased with the appeal court's order, according to his brother, Yusuf Syed, who spoke to him Monday and told WBAL;

"He was really happy and excited, especially since the court said it was in the interest of justice."

Syed, 34,  is currently serving a life sentence for Lee's murder.

Oh my f*cking God, if you still believe the case against Adnan Syed is 100 percent airtight—and that there's no room for any reasonable doubt when it comes to the evidence and testimony that was used to convict him—you better stop what you are doing right now, and listen to this week's episode of Undisclosed.

As Popdust previously reported, the 34-year-old has spent the past 15 years behind bars, after being sentenced to life plus 30 years, for the murder of his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee back in 1999—Syed vehemently maintains his innocence.

The case garnered national attention last year after NPR reporter, and This American Life producer, Sarah Koenig, covered it in great depth, on Serial, her weekly podcast series. However, after twelve gripping episodes, listeners were left no clearer as to Syed's innocence or guilt.

Rabia Chaudry, the lawyer who first alerted Koenig to the case, along with fellow attorneys, Susan Simpson and Colin Miller, are giving their all in an attempt to remedy that—working tirelessly to tear apart the State's case against Syed—and they are broadcasting their findings every two weeks on their podcast series, Undisclosed: The State Vs Adnan Syed.

During the first episode of Undisclosed, the team dissected the State's version of what occurred on January 13, 1999, the day Hae was murdered—pulling to pieces many of the witness statements, and turning up two shocking new accounts of what allegedly went down that day, that were never presented at either the first trial (which ended in a mistrial), or the second, which resulted in Syed's conviction.

In a follow-up special broadcast a week later, titled, Addendum 1: New Information About The Trip To Cathy's, Chaudry, Simpson and Miller shredded another vital, key piece of the prosecution's case against Syed—what purportedly went down January 13 (post murder, pre-body dump), at the apartment of "Cathy" [real name Christy], a close friend of the prosecution's star witness, Jay Wilds.

The second installment of Undisclosed, focused on Hae's movements that fateful day—and, as became evident very early on in Serial, the prosecution's version of events appears to be more than a little “off."

Then, in a second special, broadcast, last week, titled Addendum 2: More information on Takera, and on Hae's other diary—they presented the revelation that Hae kept a second diary, which, if found, could possibly hold the key to Adnan proving his innocence.

But, it's this week's broadcast, covering the purported events of Jay's day on January 13, that proves to be the real Kryptonite when it comes to the State's case against Syed.

And, as became very apparent, very early on, and then continued throughout the entirety of Serial, there is something very very rotten in the state of Maryland...specifically Baltimore.... more specifically Baltimore Police Department.

“January 13, 1999, is the seminal day in this case," Chaudry starts off as way of introduction. “That is the day Hae Lee would leave school and disappear forever. Today, we get to the heart of the State's case—the center of gravity in this murder charge against Adnan, a wormhole that warps timelines, and maybe the most mysterious figure in this story, according even to Serial—today, we look at Jay's day."

She then goes on to lay out what we DO know about Jay:

“Who is Jay? Jay is a former Woodlawn Hills student," Chaudry says. “He graduated a year before Adnan and Hae, he knew them primarily because of Stephanie, his girlfriend—Stephanie and Jay had dated since middle school….Stephanie had been friends with Adnan since middle school, they were pretty close, they were in the magnet program together, and they had been crowned the King and Queen of junior prom in the spring of 1998."

Then, what people who have been following the case always want to know—were Jay and Adnan friends?

I mean, I'm not the only one here wondering, why would Adnan call Jay and ask him to help bury the body of the ex-girlfriend he just brutally murdered, if the two weren't at least friends? Makes no sense, right?

“According to the statements we have—both at trial, and police statements—whether made by Adnan, or Jay, or Jen—Jen was also a Woodlawn High 1998 graduate, and a friend of Jay's, and very much involved in the prosecution of the case…according to all those folks, it seems like they weren't actually really friends," Chaudry claims, going on to reference Jen's interview with cops in 1999, where she talks about Jay and Adnan not being “friend" friends, and Jay's own testimony during trial in 2000, where he says they “weren't really tight" and that Adnan was more of an acquaintance than a friend.

OK! Well, so what actually happened between these two “acquaintances" on that fateful day? What do we know to be real, true, actual fact?

“We start the day with Adnan dropping off his car with Jay," Chaudry explains. “They both agree on the time… there's a 10.45 am call to Jay, after which, Adnan comes by his house…the problem with telling the story about Jay's day, is that Jay has given a minimum of seven different stories about what happened on January 13th…four police interviews, two trial testimonies, and most recently, an interview he gave to the Intercept."

“Simply put, these stories are not consistent at all," Miller continues. “Despite the prosecution's claim at trial, there's no spine to Jay's story that holds it together…there's very little detail that's consistent across even really two of these different stories by Jay—and even if we ignore the minor details, there's simply no consistency in the big picture of what Jay is telling the cops, and eventually the jury at trial.

“When we really break it down, there's only been a few things that have really been consistent throughout Jay's story and they're pretty minor.

“And so, first, he consistently says that Hae's body was buried in Leakin Park, although the time for this burial varies quite dramatically, he does consistently say that at least one of the instruments that was used to bury Hae's body was a shovel, and, he does say it came from one of his relatives' houses, but, he doesn't say which house consistently across interviews.

“He does acknowledge he had Adnan's car and phone on January 13th…. he does consistently say that he was at Jen's house on Jan 13th, until at least 3.40…which, of course, is inconsistent with the State's theory at trial—which is that Hae was killed by 2.36…which is when the Best Buy call took place.

“And, finally, he is consistent that on January 13th, Adnan showed him Hae's body, in the trunk of her Sentra—although, both the time and the location of this trunk pop varied quite meaningfully across his interviews and testimony…And so, when we look at these consistencies in Jay's story, they really mean nothing without, again, this big spine and structure that holds it together.

“For instance, the shovels…sometimes he says there was one shovel, sometimes it's two shovels, sometimes there's a pick involved, sometimes he's helping to bury the body, sometimes not. Whose house did they come from? Was it from his mother's house? His grandmother's house? And so, we have all these various stories about the burial… and in terms of the trunk pop…. where did that take place? Was it the Woodlawn library? Was it a strip off of Vincent Avenue? Was it Franklin Town Road? The Best Buy, the story at trial? Was it a pool hall as he told his friend? Was it a gas station? Was it at his grandmother's house?

“And so, if we look at all these stories, up until 2014 they vary very wildly, and then, finally in The Intercept interview, he actually says he lied to the police initially, and said the trunk pop happened at “Cathy's" house, despite that never being disclosed to the defense at trial.

“And so, what we see, is that when we try to decipher what Jay is saying in these various statements, it's almost meaningless to do so, because these accountings are so very different...and, in fact, he's admitted himself, that he's lied in various statements about the events of January 13th 1999.

"And so that then leaves us with just two things we can look at when trying to decipher what aspects of Jay's day might in fact be reality—and, the first is to look at other witnesses and what they have to say about interacting with Jay on January 13th… and the second is to see the evolution of Jay's story…where it started, and how it got from point A to point Z when he eventually testified at trial."

The two witnesses are Jen and "Cathy" [real name Christy]—and Miller breaks down Jen's story bit by bit—first, when Jay went over to Jen's house in the morning….second, what did Jen and Jay do while he was at her house? Third, when did Jay leave her house? Next, when did Jen and Jay meet up again later that evening? Finally, what did they actually do that evening?

And, it soon becomes crystal clear that Jen's account does not match with Jay's at all….

For instance, when it comes to them meeting up for the first time in the day, Jen told cops, “I want to say I got home, probably between 12.30 and 1, and then I'd say Jay got there probably between 1 and 1.30."

However, Jay claims he went to the house to hang out with Jen's little brother Mark, they played video games together, went to the mall, returned to the house and then Jen turned up.

How about what the two did after that? Does that match at all?

Nope, not really.

Jen says that she and Jay were at her place all afternoon and that Jay never left. However, according to Jay, he left and came back multiple times. They also don't agree when it comes to the phone calls that Jay received while at Jen's house—one of them supposedly from Adnan, post murder, asking Jay to, “come and get me, the bitch is dead."

One thing they do consistently agree on though—is that Jay was still at Jen's house until around 3.40pm, when Jay supposedly got the call from Adnan….and that's pretty damn significant, because, as Miller points out, it completely debunks the “Nisha call" theory that the State relied on at trial to “prove" Adnan had killed Hae by 2.35, and been back with his phone [which Jay had borrowed for the day] by 3.32.

Plus, it doesn't fit anywhere with the call log for Adnan's cell from that day—which shows a call at 3.15 and then next one not until 4.30….

So, when you consider how many times Jay's story has changed—how all the different supposed facts shifted and morphed time and time again, why did he consistently stick to the 3.40 time claim?

Well, drum roll…..

“That's [Jen and Jay's] alibi," Chaudry opines. "Jen and Jay were together till 3.40, a time when we know Hae had already been intercepted and was probably already killed. So, if Jen and Jay were together till 3.40 pm, like they say, then neither could be responsible for her murder."

Whoa….

OK, well, what happened that evening—supposedly after Jay had helped Adnan bury Hae's body in Leakin Park? Do Jen and Jay's stories match there?

Once again—nope....not the f*ck at all.

Jay claims he and Adnan buried the body, then they abandoned Hae's car on a vacant lot, then he and Adnan stopped by the mall to toss the shovel/shovels/pick/whatever in a dumpster, that Adnan then dropped him off at home, and then Jen came to pick him up from there later. He goes on to claim that after she picked him up from his house he told her what had just just happened and Jen took him to a dumpster to dispose of the clothes he had been wearing.

However, Jen claims Adnan dropped Jay off at the mall and that's where she met him—and, according to Jen, they didn't drive to drop off the clothes until the next day!

And, that's the version of events that the prosecution chose to run with at trial.

So, finally….. what did Jen and Jay do after they met up (wherever it actually was?!!)…

Well, once again, who really knows, as their accounts vary dramatically…

They both agree that they stopped by Stephanie's house—and bizarrely, they both claim it was around 8.30—which is categorically not possible, as Stephanie was playing a basketball game that night which didn't finish till just before 10.30 pm.

However, after both agreeing on something that couldn't have actually happened, their accounts of the rest of the night go their separate ways—with Jen claiming they went to a party at an on-campus sorority house for an hour or so, before heading to “Cathy" [Christy] and Jeff's house—and Jay claiming they went straight to their house and did not go to a party before hand.

But, now we get to the real crux of the matter.

As Simpson says, “We've always known Jay lies, he admits he lies… but the real enigma here is… why?"

That's the million dollar question… what would be his motivation? What's the utility of these lies?

Turns out, as Chaudry explains, “All this time we had been trying to plot Jay's dream, but it turns out, it was ever his dream to begin with."

Then shit gets real….. REAL real......real f*cking crazy.

The Undisclosed team plays audio from Jay's interviews with cops—and, if what we are hearing is true and un-doctored in anyway, their argument that the Baltimore Police coached their star witness during his interviews, and coerced and bullied him in to giving false testimony against Adnan, holds pretty damn true.

It's dynamite—and you can listen to it below.

Meanwhile, keep checking back on Popdust for more updates on the story—and head over to audioboom for more Undisclosed: The state Vs Adnan Syed.

The Undisclosed team continues to muddy the legal waters that were used to drown Adnan Syed and land him in jail for the rest of his life.

As Popdust previously reported, Syed, 34, has spent the past 15 years behind bars, after being sentenced to life plus 30 years, for the murder of his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee back in 1999—Syed vehemently maintains his innocence.

The case garnered national attention last year after NPR reporter, and This American Life producer, Sarah Koenig, covered it in great depth, on Serial, her weekly podcast series. However, after twelve gripping episodes, listeners were left no clearer as to Syed's innocence or guilt.

Rabia Chaudry, the lawyer who first alerted Koenig to the case, along with fellow attorneys, Susan Simpson and Colin Miller, are giving their all in an attempt to remedy that—working tirelessly to tear apart the State’s case against Syed—and they are broadcasting their findings every two weeks on their podcast series, Undisclosed: The State Vs Adnan Syed.

During the first episode of Undisclosed, the team dissected the State’s version of what occurred on January 13, 1999, the day Hae was murdered—pulling to pieces many of the witness statements, and turning up two shocking new accounts of what allegedly went down that day, that were never presented at either the first trial (which ended in a mistrial), or the second, which resulted in Syed’s conviction.

In a follow-up special broadcast a week later, titled, Addendum 1: New Information About The Trip To Cathy’s, Chaudry, Simpson and Miller shredded another vital, key piece of the prosecution’s case against Syed—what purportedly went down January 13 (post murder, pre-body dump), at the apartment of Cathy, a close friend of the prosecution's star witness, Jay Wilds.

The second installment of Undisclosed, focused on Hae’s movements that fateful day—and, as became evident very early on in Serial, the prosecution’s version of events appears to be more than a little “off.”

Today, they broadcast another special, titled Addendum 2: More information on Takera, and on Hae’s other diary—the latter of which, if found, could possibly hold the key to Adnan proving his innocence.

But, more on that later.

The team kicks off the podcast by answering listener questions, which cover a variety of subjects—including the level of friendship between Hae and Jay Wilds; the true identity of the mysterious “Takera” and why she wasn’t interviewed by authorities following Hae’s murder; why nobody can track down evidence of when exactly the interview between Hae and local news station, Channel 36, actually happened; if the clothes Hae was wearing in that interview can be compared to those found on her body; if the wrestling match that the State claims happened January 13th, wasn’t on that date, what does it mean for their case; and, is there a record of Adnan logging on and checking his email during the time Asia McClain claims she saw him at the library working on the computer?

According to Chaudry, Hae and Jay did know each other, had at least one class together, and had the same circle of friends, as Jay was dating Stephanie, a friend of both Adnan and Hae. But, Chaudry says, “there doesn’t seem to be any indication that they were actually 'friend' friends.” And, there was no mention of Jay in Hae’s handwritten diary.

When it comes to the true identity of Takera—who played such a major role in last week’s podcast—Miller shares that they do know who she is, claims, “it is clear she was never interviewed by police” and goes on to question why not.

“According to the prosecution at trial, the last student to see Hae alive was, again, her best friend, Ayisha," Miller says. “And, Ayisha was in her last period, AP psychology class, and, according to the prosecution, Ayisha saw Hae at the end of class, in class, talking to Adnan.

“And so, if you’re the State, and you’re trying to determine did this conversation take place on January 13th, what was its content, what did Hae do after class? Who is the person you would most want to talk to? The answer is probably the person who sat next to Hae in AP psychology class….she likely would have been there for the conversation with Adnan….she’s likely the person most likely to accompany Hae out of class—and so, who was that person?

“It’s a good question, and it seems like one the State decided to pursue….and they had the AP psychology teacher draw a diagram of the class. She plotted Adnan sitting at the back of the class, furthest away from the door, plotted the two people who sat next to him....the teacher then plotted Hae in her seat, on the side of the class, closer to the front door, and then the one person who sat next to her—apparently the other seat was empty.

“Hence, the question is, who is this other person who sat right next to Hae in AP psychology?  And the answer is..”

Drum roll……

Yep, you guessed it…..Takera!!

“And, there’s no transcription mistake here,” Miller continues. “The teacher correctly spelled both her first and last name….and, so, what are we left with? We’re left with Debbie, the original last person to see Hae alive, and yet, Takera, who is almost certainly part of this conversation, was never interviewed.

“The state’s view at the end of trial is that Ayisha is the last student to see Hae alive….and yet, Takera sits right next to Hae, in that same AP psychology class, and again, as far as we can tell, no attempt whatsoever to interview Takera.”

Now, that’s either just plain bizarre, just plain incompetent, just plain fishy…. or some kind of combination of all three.

So, now to the question of, did the interview between Hae and Channel 36 actually happen on the day of her murder, as the State claims, or, did it actually happened on January 5, eight days prior, as the Undisclosed team argued during last week’s podcast? And, why can nobody pin down evidence of the actual date?

“Reason we haven’t been able to get information from the channel itself, is that they don’t have it,” Simpson explains. “Folks have reached out to them to try and get verification, but have not really been able to dig anything up. Apparently the original tape doesn’t exist…and the original would have the date and time stamp.. and they have no record of when the video was actually made, which is just, kind of sad—and, also odd, because, you think, it was 1999, it wasn’t like it was 1899, but it’s just one more thing that easily could have been verified, you know, 16 years ago, and now we’re struggling to do.”

OK, well, how about the clothes Hae was wearing in that video? Can they be matched to the clothes that were found on her body? If it’s a positive match, wouldn’t that be proof that the interview did happen on January 13th, the day of her murder?

Sadly no, as Chaudry explains, “In that video she’s wearing either a Lacrosse, or field hockey uniform, I don’t know the difference, and, we do know those uniforms were kept on campus. There was a locker for them, and they stayed there, so, it’s no surprise those were not found in her car, or with her.

“What is surprising though, is she was wearing tennis shoes and socks in that interview—Hae didn’t have a locker on campus, she used her car as a storage place, but her car didn’t have her shoes, or her socks in it, when the cops found it, which is weird, because, if she had had those with her that day, they should have been in the car somewhere.”

And, talking of what was found—or not found rather—in Hae’s car, there’s the mystery of the disappearing hot fries.

During both of Syed’s trials, Woodlawn High teacher, Inez Butler, testified that Hae stopped by her concession stand after school on January 13, and bought apple juice and hot fries. But, according to Chaudry, “What cops noted in their report though, because it didn’t add up, was that, although they found a bottle of apple juice in Hae’s car, they didn’t find any hot fries…which they should have, if Inez Butler was recalling the right day…..those snacks should have still been there…but they weren’t. So, what did the cops do? Because their report says, 'did we ever find the bag of hot fries?' No, they didn’t.”

And so, if the State’s timeline for January 13th is completely off—if Butler was recalling another day, and if the wrestling match that was a key part of their narrative for that day, didn’t occur on that date—does that throw everything up in the air?

Miller says that yep, it does. It changes everything.

“If we think back to Serial, we have Summer, and she’s talking with Hae about the wrestling match up till about 2.50….3pm on January 13th,” he explains. “And what that means is, we have Asia McClain who saw Adnan in the library, up until about 2.40 pm….and, while she’s legally relevant… she’s factually, pretty irrelevant…because, if Hae’s still at school till 2.50…3 pm…Adnan certainly could have seen Asia at the library, and then gotten in her car.

“Well, if there’s no wrestling match on January 13th, Summer is taken out of the narrative. .. and, in fact, the last person to have seen Hae on January 13th is likely Becky…who, again, said, she saw Hae leaving school around 2.20 pm in a hurry, with something else to do, and somewhere else to be.

"And that does two things… first, it makes Asia, actually very important….if she saw Adnan up until about 2.40, and Hae’s leaving school about 2.20….well, then, obviously Adnan didn’t get into her car…. the other point is to say, we know Hae usually left school around 3 o’clock, to pick up her cousin at 3.15….well, according to Becky, she’s leaving school in a hurry at 2.20, to do something else….so, she’s leaving about 40 minutes earlier than usual….and this is something I’ve been trying to determine ever since Serial ended… what was this something else that was causing Hae to leave 40 minutes early, when did it come up, how did it come up?

“My best theory at this point in time, is, the ride with Adnan was still discussed at lunch, and so, sometime during Hae’s computer class, or, sometime during AP psychology, I think she got something on her pager, something came up, question is, what was that something?”

That’s the burning question, and, as the police failed to pull Hae’s pager records following her murder, and the pager has never been found, it is likely to continue burning bright and hard well into the future.

Then, there’s the question of Adnan’s emails—if he WAS at the library working on the computer on January 13th, as Asia claims, surely there must be a record of it?

Once again, that’s a very frustrating and resounding no, as Chaudry explains, “Adnan had gotten Asia’s letters shortly after he was arrested, and she had mentioned he was on the computer when she talked to him, and he remembered that when he had actually seen her at the library, that he was on the computer…. so, he had given his lawyer his email address, and also his password, and we know that, because it’s in her notes from 1999. Now, we have no evidence that she actually ever checked his email address, and what’s really frustrating, especially for someone like me, is that, that would have taken absolutely no effort.

“I mean, you could sit in your own office, never leave your own office, and log in to somebody else’s Hotmail account. And there’s just no evidence, there are no print-outs of his activity… and what happened is, she went back  to Adnan, and said, ‘I checked with Asia and the dates are wrong,’ so he kind of forgot about Asia, and he forgot about the email stuff.

“By the time I learned about Asia, and the possibility that he may have been checking his email, which was like, a year later, after he was convicted, I immediately went to try and log in to his account… and, the account had been suspended, because that’s how Hotmail worked, they did not keep inactive accounts open. And, since that time, a number of folks have tried to get that information from Hotmail, including Sarah by the way, from Serial...a number of Adnan's lawyers…and what the response has been, is that, it’s just gone….1999 was too long ago, and that information’s gone.

“Which is kind of hard for me to believe, because, I always thought that once it’s out there on the internet, it never goes away, so there’s part of me that wonders, if somewhere, in the very dark recesses of internet archives, his account records exist, and gosh, it would be great if Microsoft would step up, and say, ‘hey yeah, we’ll find it for you.’”

But, things get even murkier when it comes to the subject of Hae’s “secret” second diary.

According to Chaudry, “Hae had a handwritten diary that was found and was used at trial. At trial, Hae’s brother testified that he had gotten caught snooping—he had gone into her room and read her diary, and Hae had found out. As a result, Hae had stopped writing all of her entries on the physical book that was introduced into evidence… instead, she had started writing her more sensitive diary entries on her computer… and she would save them on a floppy disc, that way, they weren’t available to her brother and he couldn’t find them.

“There’s  no official record of what happened to that diary, the one on the floppy disc,” she continues. “But, there is a big clue from the police files…and from the evidence that was taken into custody….in Hae’s car the police found a floppy disc, it was labeled ‘Hae school stuff’ and it was on the backseat…. we don’t know what happened to it…we don’t know where it went…. we don’t know if anyone ever checked it…but it’s a good bet that’s where the diary was kept…and if we want more information about what Hae was doing, what her plans where, it’s a good place to look.

“The police never did though—or at least, never officially. There are some oddities in the trial record though that suggest that maybe someone had access to it. For instance, in closing arguments, the prosecution claims, in Hae’s diary she had written that she had given Adnan a ride two days before her death—and this was evidence that she would have given him a ride on the 13th as well. Problem is, there is no entry in her diary to support this, either the prosecution was simply making this up, because it helped their case against Adnan, or, possibly, it actually was in Hae’s diary, just not the one that was introduced into evidence.”

The plot just thickens and thickens….. and, likelihood is, it’s going to continue to do so yet further, especially after next week’s podcast, when the Undisclosed team dissects Jay’s alleged movements on the day of Hae’s murder.

Keep checking back on Popdust for more updates on the story—listen below to this week's Addendum special—and head over to audioboom for more Undisclosed: The state Vs Adnan Syed.