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US Muslim Army chaplain appeals reprimand
Updated: 2004-03-31 15:27

A U.S. Muslim Army chaplain once suspected of being involved in an espionage ring at Guantanamo prison camp for terror suspects has appealed his reprimand for two minor charges.

Capt. James Yee, 35, was found guilty last week of adultery and improperly downloading pornography onto an Army computer. [AP]
Capt. James Yee, 35, was found guilty last week of adultery and improperly downloading pornography onto an Army computer. His lawyer appealed Sunday.

The attorney, Eugene Fidell, wrote "a grave miscarriage of justice has occurred. Decisions were made on insufficient evidence, and have had devastating effects."

Fidell said the Army's decision to drop most of the charges and hold an Article 15 proceeding - used to settle minor disciplinary issues - hurt Yee's defense preparation and minimized media scrutiny. "This smacks of gamesmanship and bias," he wrote.

Fidell is requesting Gen. James T. Hill, commander of the U.S. Southern Command, recuse himself from the case and asks that the military return Yee's passport, restore him to duty and grant him a formal apology.

U.S. Southern Command spokesman Lt. Col. Bill Costello said they had not received the appeal and could not immediately comment.

The chaplain spent 76 days in custody after the military initially linked him to a possible espionage ring at the Guantanamo Bay naval station in Cuba.

He was eventually charged with mishandling classified material, failing to obey an order, making a false official statement, adultery and conduct unbecoming an officer. On March 19, the Army dismissed all criminal charges.

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