Freed Gitmo Detainee to Sue US for Damages

By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 27, 2009 12:05 PM CDT
Former Guantanamo detainee Mohammed Jawad.   (AP Photo)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – A Guantanamo inmate recently released to his native Afghanistan after almost 7 years of detention plans to sue the US for damages, the AP reports. Mohammed Jawad is considered one of the youngest prisoners held at the Cuban base—he claims he was 12 at the time he was captured, though the Justice Department maintains he was 17. “I was an innocent child when they put me in prison,” says Jawad, who claims he was tortured there.

Jawad’s American military lawyer, soon to leave for private practice, promises to help his client’s case. “I will not allow him not to be assisted,” Maj. Eric Montalvo says. Jawad was held starting in 2002 for throwing a grenade at US troops, though he says a confession he made was coerced by Afghan officials who said they would murder his family. An American judge ordered his release, saying the government case was an "outrage" and "full of holes."