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Accused spy: I used magic to protect boss

LONDON, Oct. 24 (UPI) -- A British Army interpreter accused of spying for Iran claimed Thursday that he used magic learned in Cuba to protect his commander in Afghanistan.

Cpl. Daniel James, an Iranian immigrant who gained dual citizenship, testified at his trial in the Old Bailey in London, The Guardian reported.

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James said he became interested in salsa dancing, made himself into the "king of salsa" and traveled to Cuba because of his interest. There, he said, he learned the practice of Yoruba magic.

When he joined the Territorial Army, James became personal interpreter for Gen. David Richards.

"I actually did black magic for General Richards, praying to God to protect him from the Taliban," James said.

James is charged with violating the Official Secrets Act by passing information to an Iranian diplomat in Kabul.

Prosecutors described James, who worked as a personal trainer in Brighton, as someone with "grandiose ideas about his own importance."

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