Court Throws Out bin Laden Driver's Conviction

Salim Ahmed Hamdan's activities weren't a war crime at the time: US court
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Oct 16, 2012 10:53 AM CDT
In this undated file photo, Salim Ahmed Hamdan, a former driver for Osama bin Laden, is seen at unknown location.   (AP Photo/Photo courtesy of Prof. Neal Katyal)
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(Newser) – Osama bin Laden's former driver is off the hook in his conviction for supporting terrorism. A federal appeals court in Washington has overturned Salim Ahmed Hamdan's conviction in a 3-0 ruling, the AP reports. Its reasoning: When Hamdan was involved in the activities that landed the conviction, material support for terrorism wasn't a war crime under international law. "If the government wanted to charge Hamdan with aiding and abetting terrorism or some other war crime that was sufficiently rooted in the international law of war at the time of Hamdan's conduct, it should have done so," a judge wrote. The former Guantanamo prisoner has long since been freed and returned to Yemen, where he's said to have a new job behind the wheel—as a taxi driver. (Read more Salim Ahmed Hamdan stories.)

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