Hearing to resume next week for female soldier
A military court next week will resume a hearing on charges against a female soldier whose notorious photos with naked Iraqi prisoners are at the center of an international prisoner abuse scandal.
Army Pfc. Lynndie England's Article 32 hearing, which recessed Aug. 7 after five days, will resume on Monday and should run two days, military officials said on Tuesday.
The hearing is to determine whether England, a 21-year-old reservist with the Maryland-based 372nd Military Police Company, should face a court-martial on 13 counts of abusing detainees at Abu Ghraib prison and six counts stemming from possession of sexually explicit photos. Widely circulated photos show a smiling England pointing at the genitals of a hooded prisoner and holding a leash attached to a naked detainee.
If convicted, she could get up to 38 years in prison. Still undecided is whether prosecutors can admit more than 100 photos into evidence, including some of the notorious prison photos. The judge also is considering a defense request to include Vice President Dick Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld as witnesses.
England's lawyers contend she was following orders when she posed for photos with the prisoners. Prosecutors argue the abuse originated with rogue US soldiers that operated the prison and went outside the chain of command.