A federal appeals court on Tuesday vacated the conviction of James Ford Seale, the reputed Ku Klux Klan member who was serving three life sentences for his role in the 1964 abduction and deaths of two black Mississippi teenagers.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, in a 20-page decision, said it agreed with arguments set forth by his attorney that the statute of limitations in the case had expired. As a result, Seale's conviction is overturned.
Seale was convicted of kidnapping and conspiracy in the abductions of Charles Eddie Moore and Henry Hezekiah Dee, both 19.
The men disappeared from Franklin County in Mississippi on May 2, 1964. Their decomposed bodies, mostly skeletal remains, were pulled more than two months later from the Mississippi River.