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22-year-old charged with murder in British soldier's hacking death

By Greg Botelho, CNN
updated 4:12 AM EDT, Thu May 30, 2013
Drummer Lee Rigby had served as an infantryman in Afghanistan and Cyprus.
Drummer Lee Rigby had served as an infantryman in Afghanistan and Cyprus.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Lee Rigby's fiancee says she's "devastated" and "moved" by tributes to him
  • Adebowale was one of two wounded, arrested right after the May 22 attack
  • He's charged with murder and unlawful possession of a firearm, police say
  • He was discharged from a hospital Tuesday, and will appear in court Thursday

London (CNN) -- Michael Adebowale, 22, has been charged with murder in the hacking death of British soldier Lee Rigby earlier this month on a London street, Metropolitan Police said late Wednesday.

Adebowale will appear in court on Thursday.

He was one of two people -- along with a 28-year-old man whom family, friends and acquaintances have identified as Michael Adebolajo -- arrested after being wounded in a confrontation with police after the May 22 attack. Adebolajo has not been formally charged.

Adebowale was discharged from a hospital Tuesday and is now in custody at a police station, police said, while the 28-year-old remains hospitalized under guard.

Adebowale also is charged with unlawful possession of a firearm.

The killing of Rigby, who had served as an infantryman in Afghanistan and Cyprus, in the southeast London district of Woolwich shocked people across the United Kingdom.

In all, 10 people have been arrested in connection with the killing. Two were released without charges, while six others have been freed on bail -- the most recent a 50-year-old man arrested Monday night on suspicion of conspiracy to murder.

Rigby's fiancee, Aimee West, told Britain's Press Association on Wednesday night that she's "extremely proud" of him and "devastated" by his death. Her comments came in a statement to the news service issued through the Metropolitan Police; while police didn't relay that statement to CNN, they did confirm that they'd passed on West's remarks to the Press Association.

"I am moved by all the flowers and tributes, and that he has been remembered by the nation as the great man she was," West said of her "loving fiancee."

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