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21 detainees killed in US custody overseas, ACLU reports

[JURIST] At least 21 detainees have been killed while being held in US custody in Iraq and Afghanistan, many during or after interrogations, according to an ACLU analysis [text; press release] of Defense Department data released Monday. According to autopsy reports, at least eight of the 21 homicides resulted from abusive techniques by US military or intelligence officers, such as strangulation leading to asphyxiation, other "blunt force injuries" and smothering. More than 100 prisoners in total have died of natural and violent causes in US custody overseas. There have been more than 400 investigations of reports of detainee abuse and at least 230 military personnel have received a court-martial, nonjudicial punishment or other administrative action in connection with detainee abuse. Details about the detainee abuse and deaths were released by the US Defense Department as part of a Freedom of Information Act [DOJ backgrounder] lawsuit filed by the ACLU. The ACLU provides additional documents obtained during the litigation. AP has more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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