"There are significant litigation risks attendant to proceeding with the joint conspiracy charge as a separate and stand-alone offense in the subject case," Martins said in a motion released Friday.
But then his recommendation to withdraw the charge was overruled by Convening Authority Bruce MacDonald, a retired admiral who oversees the military commissions, who said the conspiracy charge was still under judicial review.
The debate over the conspiracy charge won't be at issue at this week's hearing. A judge set the four-day proceeding at the base hear arguments on about two dozen defense and prosecution motions that must be resolved prior to a trial that is likely at least a year away.
Among the motions is one from lawyers for the five defendants, who include self-professed terrorist mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, requiring the U.S. government to preserve the secret overseas prisons where the men were held, and subjected to harsh interrogations, before they were taken to Guantanamo. Those prisons, they argue, are potential evidence for claims that the prisoners were subjected to torture.
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