Jury selection continues for Iraq war crime trial

January 5, 2012 - 10:40 PM

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Jury selection will resume Friday for the trial of the final defendant in the biggest criminal case against U.S. troops to emerge from the Iraq war.

Marine Corps spokesman Lt. Col. Joseph Kloppel said Thursday that the military court at Camp Pendleton had not finished its interviews of Marines with combat experience to serve on the jury for the trial of Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich. He says opening arguments now could begin as late as Monday.

Wuterich led the Marine squad in 2005 that killed 24 Iraqis, including unarmed women and children, in the town of Haditha after a roadside bomb exploded near a Marine convoy, killing one Marine.

Wuterich has said he regretted the loss of civilian lives but believed he was operating within military combat rules.