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Former 1960s radical's conviction upheld

MIAMI, May 24 (UPI) -- The Georgia Supreme Court Monday upheld the conviction of Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin, the former H. Rap Brown, for the murder of an Atlanta sheriff's deputy.

Lawyers for the former 1960s radical, sought a new trial for the Muslim cleric on grounds prosecutors violated Al-Amin's right not to testify for himself, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution said.

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He was convicted of malice murder, felony murder, aggravated assault on a peace officer and other charges.

Ricky Kinchen and another sheriff's deputy went to Al-Amin's home March 16, 2000, to serve him with missing a court date on charges of receiving stolen property and impersonating a police officer.

Investigators said Al-Amin opened fire with an assault rifle, killing Kinchen and wounding the other deputy. Al-Amin was captured four days later in Alabama.

During closing arguments in the trial, the prosecution mentioned the defense's decision against calling Al-Amin.

"We find that the error, although of a constitutional magnitude, was harmless beyond a reasonable doubt," the court ruled.

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