Judge might split Guantanamo trial of 9/11 suspects

May 19, 2012 01:08

A US military judge is considering splitting up the trial of five Guantanamo prisoners accused of plotting the September 11 attacks because of conflicts in scheduling and strategy, lawyers in the case said on Friday.

The defendants, including the professed mastermind of the hijacked plane attacks, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, are to appear in court at the Guantanamo Bay US naval base in Cuba on June 12 for the next pretrial hearing in the death penalty case.

Lawyers for two defendants have asked to delay the hearing because of scheduling conflicts while lawyers for another do not want a delay.

The judge, Army Colonel James Pohl, ordered prosecutors to file legal briefs by May 24 showing cause why the case should not be severed. He did not indicate how many separate trials he is considering.

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