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First new Guantanamo detainee charges expected by Friday: chief prosecutor

[JURIST] New war crimes charges will be filed against Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] detainees beginning as early as Friday, chief prosecutor Col. Moe Davis (USAF) [official profile, PDF] said Tuesday. Davis said, however, that charges are only expected to be filed against a few of the 10 detainees who were scheduled for trial before the Supreme Court ruled in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld [opinion text] that military commissions as initially constituted lacked proper legal authorization [JURIST report]. Once the military files the war crimes charges, under the new military tribunal system [JURIST report] created when Congress passed the Military Commissions Act of 2006 (MCA) [PDF text; JURIST news archive] in September, the detainees have the right to preliminary hearings within 30 days and a jury trial within 120 days. The Pentagon's trial procedures were released earlier this month in a manual [PDF text; JURIST report] distributed on Capital Hill.

On Monday, Davis said he was very likely to recommend the death penalty [JURIST report] for some of the 14 high-value detainees [DNI backgrounder, PDF] moved to the camp [JURIST report] from CIA secret prisons in September. The first evidence is expected to be presented by this summer. AP has more.

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