11:39 GMT10 August 2020
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    The Navy has dismissed charges against an officer for not reporting war crimes by a Navy SEAL who was later acquitted of murder, AP reported Thursday.

    According to AP, a Navy official familiar with the matter but not authorized to speak publicly has confirmed charges against Lt. Jacob Portier were dropped earlier on Thursday.

    The move reportedly comes a month after a military jury cleared Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher of murder in a trial that got the attention of US President Donald Trump's attention, AP said.

    Gallagher, 39, was earlier acquitted of both the murder of a captive Daesh fighter and the attempted murder of two wounded, unarmed civilians in Iraq in 2017.

    Following Gallagher's 2018 arrest, several congress members became vocal defenders of the SEAL, as did Trump, who intervened to order him freed from pretrial detention.

    It was widely reported in May that Trump was considering pardons for a number of service members accused of war crimes and that Gallagher's was among the names.

    Gallagher could have reportedly faced life in prison. Several fellow SEAL team members reportedly testified earlier that he had fatally stabbed a captured Iraqi prisoner in the neck with a custom-made knife after the teenage fighter was brought to Gallagher's outpost for medical treatment, according to Reuters.

    In 2016, the International Criminal Court (ICC) in a report found reasonable grounds to believe that the US has long been complicit in the torture and ill-treatment of detainees in secret detention facilities in Afghanistan in 2003-2004. In 2017, the UN-sponsored court said it would conduct a more detailed investigation into the allegations.


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    Edward Gallagher, War Crimes, US Navy
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