UK conviction for jailed SAS sniper overturned

March 13, 2013 - 12:29 PM

LONDON (AP) — An elite British sniper jailed for illegally possessing a gun and ammunition has won an appeal to have his conviction overturned.

Sgt. Danny Nightingale of the Special Air Service admitted illegal possession of the 9mm Glock pistol and more than 300 rounds of ammunition at a court martial in November. He was sentenced to 18 months military detention, which was reduced to a 12-month suspended sentence on appeal.

The Court of Appeal quashed the convictions on Wednesday and ordered a retrial.

Lawyers for the 37-year-old, who has served in Afghanistan and Bosnia, had said that he was given the gun as a present by soldiers he helped train in Iraq, and that he had no intention to use it or the ammunition.

British law has strict controls on firearm ownership.