Opening statements begin in Iraq war crime trial

Opening statements begin in Iraq war crime trial

CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. (AP) — A military prosecutor at Camp Pendleton, Calif., has begun his opening statement in the court-martial of a Marine whose squad killed 24 Iraqis, including unarmed women and children, in the Iraqi town of Haditha in 2005.

Maj. Nicholas Gannon today addressed a jury of battle-hardened Marines who will decide the case of Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich.

Gannon says evidence will show that none of the victims were a threat.

Wuterich is now charged with voluntary manslaughter in nine of the deaths and other crimes.

He is the last of the eight Marines initially accused of murder or failure to investigate the killings to face trial. Six had charges dropped or dismissed, and one was acquitted.

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