'War crime risk for MPs in 'retro' case against Hicks'

Submitted by Callemity on Mon, 12/02/2007 - 12:54

-by Callemity

Australia's support of a new, retrospective terrorism charge against David Hicks has put members of the Federal Government at serious risk of committing a war crime, a leading Victorian silk and international law expert has warned.

Peter Vickery, QC, said members of the Government were at risk of breaching the Australian criminal code as well as Australia's international treaty obligations by urging the US to proceed with the present draft charges against Hicks.

Mr Vickery, an International Commission of Jurists special "rapporteur" on Hicks, said the charge of "material support for terrorism" against Hicks was a classic retrospective law which did not exist in 2001.

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No pardon for Hicks if brought back to Australia, says PM

Submitted by Anonymous on Thu, 22/02/2007 - 18:17.

ABC NEWS - http://www.abc.net.au/

Last Update: Thursday, February 22, 2007. 6:05pm (AEDT)

The Prime Minister says Guantanamo Bay detainee David Hicks would not be given a pardon if he were convicted and returned to Australia.

John Howard has attacked the Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd over Labor's approach to Hicks, who is facing charges of attempted murder and providing material support to terrorism.

Mr Howard says Hicks does receive the presumption of innocence under the US military commissions, despite claims to the contrary by Mr Rudd.

Mr Rudd says he will seek advice on whether Hicks could be pardoned if he is convicted.

But Mr Howard has a different approach.

"Our view is that whatever sentence he receives should be offset by the amount of time he's served in Guantanamo Bay, and the residue should be served in an Australian prison," he said.

Hicks was captured in Afghanistan where he allegedly fought alongside the ruling Taliban against US-led forces who invaded after the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001.

He has been held in Guantanamo Bay detention facility for five years.


SBS Insight program, "Hicks on Trial"

ABC TV Four Corners transcript, 31st October 2005 - "The Case of David Hicks" - Reported by Debbie Whitmont



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