David Hicks

© 2005 Reuters

David Hicks, an Australian, was the first person to have been convicted by the US military commissions. He pleaded guilty in April 2007 to one count of providing material support for terrorism and was sentenced to seven years. All but nine months of this sentence were suspended, and Hicks served seven months in his native Australia and was released on December 29, 2007. Included in the plea deal was a one-year gag rule that prohibited Hicks from discussing his treatment or capture. Hicks was also barred from suing anyone in the US government regarding his detention or treatment, and from profiting from the eventual sale of his story.

Hicks told his lawyers that he was mistreated by US forces in Afghanistan prior to his transfer to Guantanamo, saying he was beaten, made to endure prolonged sleep deprivation, and forced to take unidentified medication. In 2015 his conviction was vacated after a US federal appeals court found that material support for terrorism is not a war crime. (Last updated August 9, 2018)

 

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