Court martial of Canadian soldier over Afghan death to open March 15

The Canadian Press ~ The News
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GATINEAU, Que. - A ground-breaking court martial involving an alleged battlefield execution in Afghanistan has been adjourned to next month.
The court set March 9 for hearing any final legal arguments before the first evidence is delivered March 15.
Capt. Robert Semrau, 36, is charged with second-degree murder and other military offences in the death of a disarmed and badly wounded Taliban insurgent during an operation in August 2008.
Semrau's lawyer argued unsuccessfully today to hold the trial in Afghanistan.
The prosecution suggested it be moved to Canadian Forces Base Petawawa in eastern Ontario, home to Semrau and his regiment.
The trial judge ruled the proceedings should be held in the military court room of a federal complex just across the river from Ottawa.
Part of the trial may have to be held in Afghanistan, to take testimony from Afghan witnesses, but the judge says that will be decided later.
It's believed to be the first time a Canadian soldier has been charged in a battlefield death.
The body of the unidentified insurgent at the centre of the case was never recovered.

Organizations: Taliban

Geographic location: Afghanistan, Eastern Ontario, Ottawa

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