Tattoo tales: Prosecutors seek details on ex-NFLer Hernandez' arm ink

BOSTON Wed May 21, 2014 1:53pm EDT

New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez is arraigned on charges of murder and weapons violations in Attleborough, Massachusetts, after being arrested, in this June 26, 2013 file photo. REUTERS/Mike George/Pool/Files

New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez is arraigned on charges of murder and weapons violations in Attleborough, Massachusetts, after being arrested, in this June 26, 2013 file photo.

Credit: Reuters/Mike George/Pool/Files

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BOSTON (Reuters) - Prosecutors on Wednesday said they are seeking to interview the tattoo artist or artists who decorated the right forearm of former NFL star Aaron Hernandez around the time he is accused of killing two men after leaving a Boston nightclub.

Hernandez, who has been charged with the murder of three men in two separate incidents, in 2012 and 2013, has appeared in court heavily tattooed on both arms since his June 2013 arrest.

His right arm features an intricate series of images, with stars, the words "God's" and "hands" and a dagger wrapped in a banner reading "no fear."

"The artists being sought are considered witnesses only and are not accused of any wrongdoing," prosecutors in Massachusetts' Suffolk County said on Wednesday, noting that they believe Hernandez got the tattoo in question sometime between February 2012 and June 2013.

They declined to describe the tattoos in more detail, saying only that "the artists may have made observations of evidentiary value."

Hernandez was charged with the murder of semiprofessional football player Odin Lloyd in June 2013, and authorities followed up earlier this month by also charging him with the fatal shooting in July 2012 of two men, Cape Verdean nationals Daniel Abreu and Safiro Furtado.

Hernandez, who had a $41 million contract with the New England Patriots until the team cut him hours after his arrest, has pleaded not guilty to charges surrounding Lloyd's death. He is due in court next week to face arraignment in the 2012 shooting.

(Reporting by Scott Malone; editing by Gunna Dickson)

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