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'Battered spouse' defense allowed in beheading trial
by Sandra Tan and Matt Gryta
After waiting 1 1/2 years for cable executive Muzzammil "Mo" Hassan to face murder charges in the stabbing and beheading of his wife, prosecutors suffered a blow Friday when a judge ruled that the defense can introduce evidence of "battered spouse syndrome."
Prosecutors said the decision by Erie County Judge Thomas P. Franczyk forced them to seek a delay -- the third since the start of this year -- in the trial, now scheduled for Jan. 10, nearly two full years after Aasiya Zubair Hassan was killed.
Jury selection had been set to begin Wednesday.
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