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Last Updated: Thursday, 31 March, 2005, 14:39 GMT 15:39 UK
US captain guilty of Iraq killing
Kufa mosque [archive picture]
The shooting happened near the Iraqi city of Kufa
A military court has found a US army captain guilty of killing a wounded Iraqi man in central Iraq last year.

Capt Rogelio Maynulet, 30, said he shot the man, who had been wounded in a clash with US soldiers, in order to end his suffering.

The court based in Wiesbaden, Germany, found Maynulet guilty of assault with intent to commit manslaughter.

The panel will later discuss a sentence for the charge, which carries a maximum of 10 years in prison.

Maynulet 'played God'

The prosecution had pressed for a conviction on the more serious charge of assault with intent to commit murder, which can carry a 20-year jail sentence.

Karim Hassan, 36, was killed on 21 May last year near the central Iraqi town of Kufa.

This combat-trained life saver prescribed two bullets - he didn't call his superiors for guidance, didn't consult with his medic
Maj John Rothwell

US troops fired at a vehicle they thought was carrying militants linked to the radical Shia cleric Moqtada Sadr.

The hearing was told that the car's passenger was killed immediately, while the driver was badly injured.

Lt Colin Cremin testified that Maynulet and others in his unit had described the incident to him, saying the driver "had half his brain hanging out, there was nothing more that could be done for him".

In closing remarks on Thursday, the prosecution had said Maynulet had "played God" when he shot the man.

"This combat-trained life saver prescribed two bullets. He didn't call his superiors for guidance, didn't consult with his medic," Maj John Rothwell said.

Maynulet currently remains with the Wiesbaden unit but he was suspended from command on 25 May last year.





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