Saudi court orders 14 Shiites executed for crimes in east

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A lawyer says a Saudi court has sentenced 14 Shiite citizens to death on charges related to terrorist activities in the predominantly Shiite Eastern Province.

The lawyer, who works in the Eastern Province and wished to remain anonymous for fear of retribution, told The Associated Press that of the 24 defendants, the Specialized Criminal Court in Riyadh on Wednesday ordered one man released from prison.

The Saudi broadcaster Al-Arabiya says nine others were given prison terms ranging from three to 15 years for the killing of a policeman, vandalism, armed robbery and shooting at security forces and civilians in the Eastern Province village of al-Awamiya.

The lawyer says the group has been under arrest since 2013 for crimes dating back to a wave of 2011 protests.

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