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Tuesday, March 21, 2006

BREAKING NEWS ~ Abu Ghraib dog handler convicted of abusing detainees
Jeannie Shawl at 11:28 AM ET

[JURIST] A military jury has found US Army Sgt. Michael J. Smith guilty on six counts of abusing detainees at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison [JURIST news archive] for using his unmuzzled dog to intimidate inmates. Smith was found guilty of two counts of maltreatment of detainees, conspiring to make a contest of making detainees soil themselves, dereliction of duty, assault, and an indecent act in violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice [text].

The military jury heard testimony [JURIST report] that, for their own amusement, Smith and Sgt. Santos A. Cardona competed to make detainees soil themselves. Col. Thomas Pappas [Wikipedia profile], the former Army commander of military intelligence at Abu Ghraib, also testified during Smith's court-martial that the Army lacked clear rules regarding the use of dogs [JURIST report] during interrogations of prisoners. A sentencing hearing for Smith is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon and Cardona's court-martial on related charges will begin in May. AP has more.

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