KANSAS CITY, Missouri (AP) — A student from Saudi Arabia is free for the first time in nearly a year after murder charges against him were dropped in the U.S.

Ziyad Abid was briefly taken into custody Friday by immigration officials then released after prosecutors dismissed all charges.

The 24-year-old Abid had been in jail since September, when detectives said his roommate, Reginald Singletary Jr., admitted killing a local bar owner but said Abid had paid him to do it.

Abid's case gained national attention after the Saudi government posted $2 million bond in April but a judge called him a flight risk and refused to release him.

The charges were dropped after Singletary refused to answer questions during a deposition Tuesday, leaving the state with insufficient evidence to prosecute Abid.

Singletary remains in jail on $1 million bond and has pleaded not guilty.

Abid had been studying aviation and had planned to become a pilot like his father.

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Associated Press writer Bill Draper contributed.