Judge Purges General From Gitmo Case

Says he's not impartial; move could throw wrench in 9/11 trials
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted May 10, 2008 12:10 PM CDT
Col. Morris Davis, chief prosecutor, speaks to reporters after the first hearing of the U.S. Court of Military Commission review in Washington, Friday, Aug. 24, 2007.    (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
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(Newser) – A military judge has expelled a Pentagon general from the case of a Guantanamo detainee in a move that could open the military tribunal system to further attacks. The judge said the general—who is supposed to be impartial as overseer of the Gitmo legal process—worked too closely with the prosecution, fueling critics’ argument that the system is designed to score convictions, the New York Times reports. 

The former chief Gitmo prosecutor had accused the general of, among other things, pushing to use evidence gained through torture. While the judge’s decision applied to just the trial of Osama bin Laden’s former driver, the role of Gen. Thomas Hartmann will likely be questioned in others, potentially slowing the death-penalty trials of 9/11 detainees, the Wall Street Journal notes.