Judge orders young Gitmo detainee freed

July 30, 2009 at 6:58 PM
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WASHINGTON, July 30 (UPI) -- A U.S. judge Thursday ordered the release of one of the youngest detainees at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, but officials said it is uncertain whether he would go free.

The Obama administration has at least until Aug. 21 to send the detainee back to Afghanistan or try him on criminal charges in a U.S. court, The Washington Post reported.

Mohammed Jawad may have been as young as 12 when he was arrested by Afghan authorities and turned over to the U.S. military. The Afghans said in 2002 Jawad threw a hand grenade at two U.S. military and their interpreter in Kabul.

Jawad's lawyers have filed a suit asking for constitutional review of his detention. U.S. District Court Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle in Washington Thursday ruled for his release after a concession by prosecutors last week that they could no longer defend his detention by military officials at Guantanamo, The New York Times reported.

The judge ruled that the administration's case was "riddled with holes," the Times reported, and that the government's evidence largely consisted of confessions made after Jawad was threatened with death.

The case against Jawad fell apart last year in the military tribunal at Guantanamo after a military judge said his confessions came after torture.

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