Women Expected to Plead Not Guilty in Death of Kim Jong Un’s Half Brother
Two women accused of murdering the half brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un are expected to plead not guilty when their trial begins Monday in Malaysia, according to an attorney representing one of the defendants.
Indonesian Siti Aisyah and Doan Thi Huong of Vietnam are accused of murdering Kim Jong Nam on February 13 at Kuala Lumpur International Airport by smearing his face with a deadly nerve agent.
Huong’s lawyer, Hysyam Teh, told Reuters the women “will maintain their innocence.”
Aisyah and Huong have told their respective diplomats they were unwitting participants in the assassination, which U.S. and South Korean officials have said was planned by North Korean agents.
After a pretrial court proceeding in July, lawyers of the two women said their clients had been led to believe they were taking part in a reality television hoax when they assaulted Kim.
The defendants will face the death penalty if they are convicted.
Kim was the oldest son of late North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, whose other son, Kim Jong Un, assumed leadership of North Korea when their father died in 2001.