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Learning English - Words in the News
23 August, 2004 - Published 12:24 GMT
US soldier faces charges in Kabul
Former US soldier Jack  Idema

A former US soldier is facing charges in Kabul of torture and running a private jail, along with 2 other Americans. Jack Idema has said he has not had full access to the evidence he needs to defend himself. This report from Andrew North:

Listen to the story

At the last hearing a week ago, Jack Idema said videos, photos and documents that had apparently been in FBI hands since his arrest, will prove he was hunting terrorists in Afghanistan with Washington's approval.

The trial judge adjourned the case till today so this evidence could be reviewed. And some video footage which appears to show Idema interrogating an Afghan was shown in the opening hours of this hearing. But Idema said they'd only had very restricted access to the evidence and the lawyer representing another of the arrested Americans, Edward Caraballo, said the FBI had interfered with it before turning it over.

Caraballo himself arrived in court using a crutch. He showed his feet to journalists which were badly bruised. Idema said all three men had been beaten regularly while in Afghan custody. However, the prosecutor dismissed this and said Caraballo had sustained his injuries because he'd slipped. In his opening remarks, the judge said he's hoping to conclude the case at this hearing.

Andrew North, BBC, Kabul

Listen to the words

an official meeting to collect facts and decide whether any further investigation is necessary

in FBI hands
in the possession, power and responsibility of the FBI

stopped for a short time

proof, things which make people believe that something is true

interfered with
changed it, damaged it and made it less valid for the hearing

a crutch
a kind of walking stick that’s used to support someone whose leg or foot is injured

someone in custody has been arrested and being kept in prison until their court case or legal hearing begins

the prosecutor
the lawyer whose job it is to prove that the person on trial is guilty

sustained his injuries
suffered, got his injuries

opening remarks
introductory remarks, first comments

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