Briton gets life sentence in Iraq for killing two

Monday, February 28, 2011

BAGHDAD - An Iraqi court Monday sentenced a British contractor to life imprisonment for killing two of his colleagues in Baghdad, Xinhua reported.

“The court issued a verdict of life imprisonment for Danny Fitzsimons who was convicted for killing two of his colleagues,” said Tariq Harb, the lawyer of the defendant.

“The court’s rule is acceptable to me and to the defendant himself. It is very good,” Harb said, adding that the life imprisonment in the Iraqi law means 20 years.

“We hope to get further reduction after sending an appeal within days,” Harb said. According to the Iraqi law, defence lawyer has to file a formal appeal to the appeals court within 30 days of the verdict.

Fitzsimons, 30, has been under arrest in Iraq since August 2009 on murder charges.

The defendant admitted to shooting the victims who had worked with him in Baghdad’s Green Zone, but claimed it was an act of self-defence, Harb said.

Baghdad’s heavily fortified Green Zone, which houses the Iraqi government offices and the US embassy, has been the safe haven for foreign contractors and businessmen since the US-led invasion in 2003.

The zone is located on the west bank of the Tigris river which bisects the Iraqi capital.

According to a security pact signed between Baghdad and Washington that took effect Jan 1, 2009, the Iraqi authorities have the right to prosecute foreign contractors who commit crimes in the country.

Filed under: Accidents and Disasters

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