Four Navy commandos have been charged with abusing prisoners in Iraq, including one prisoner who was beaten and later died at Abu Ghraib prison in November 2003, the Navy said Friday.
More sailors may face charges after the completion of a Navy investigation into another detainee death, a Navy official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because the probe is continuing.
The Navy said the other death was in April 2004 but it provided no further information.
The only known detainee death in April 2004 was Fahin Ali Gumaa, 44, who died April 28, several days after receiving multiple gunshot wounds in Baghdad, according to Pentagon records. The circumstances of his shooting are unclear and it is not known whether SEALs were involved, informs the Boston Globe.
According to Reuters, this marked the first time that criminal charges have been brought against Navy personnel in the prisoner abuse scandal that erupted when pictures of U.S. forces physically abusing and sexually humiliating Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib on the outskirts of Baghdad surfaced in April.
Seven Army reservists, all military policy, have been charged, and military investigators have recommended charges against dozens of others in the Army.
"The Navy takes all allegations of abuse seriously and will conduct appropriate review of all available evidence involved in this case," the Navy statement said.
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