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Oct 30, 2003

Charges reduced in Gurkha case

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There are new developments in the case against three British soldiers accused of killing fourteen-year old David Zabaneh in May of 2001. News 5 has confirmed statements made by David’s mother, Maria Zetina, who revealed on last night’s newscast that British prosecutors told her the murder charges would be reduced to “violent disorder.” A British Ministry of Defence spokesperson told us that this is true, although the information was not scheduled for public release until the day of the hearing. We were also told by British military sources that the court martial would first be convened in Colchester, England on November tenth and then move to Belize where it would reconvene on November seventeenth or eighteenth. The venue has also been changed, with the hearing to be held at the George Price Centre in Belmopan instead of Price Barracks in Ladyville. We are also reliably informed that the trial will be open to the public and media. Our sources indicate that the individuals in question are no longer serving with the Parachute regiment, but have been moved elsewhere in the British Army.

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