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Agence France Presse

US Contractors Accused In Abu Ghraib Torture Suit


Employees from US military contractors helped torture Iraqi civilians detained at Abu Ghraib prison five years ago, according to a federal lawsuit filed in Los Angeles on Monday.0506 02 1

Lawyers for Emad Al-Janabi said the 43-year-old blacksmith and other prisoners were subjected to months of abuse while being held at the notorious Baghdad jail following his arrest in September 2003.

Al-Janabi was later released without charge in July 2004.

According to the lawsuit, Al-Janabi was subjected to physical and mental torture which included being shown a mock execution of his brother and nephew, being repeatedly deprived of food and sleep and threatened with dogs.

The lawsuit is lodged against defense contractors CACI International Inc, CACI Premier Technology, L-3 Communications Titan Corporation, and former CACI contractor Stephen Stefanowicz.

The complaint alleges that CACI provided interrogators used at Abu Ghraib and that Titan Corp, now owned by L-3, employed translators at the detention facility. Al-Janabi and other Abu Ghraib detainees are being represented by lawyers from the Center for Constitutional Rights.

"We want the complete truth about Abu Ghraib to be told. The world must know what happened," Al-Janabi said in a statement released by the CCR.

CCR attorney Katherine Gallagher said the case was being waged to show that "private military contractors can't act with impunity outside the law."

"They have to be held accountable for their participation in the atrocities at Abu Ghraib and the other facilities," she said.

"We believe what they and their employees did clearly violated the Geneva Conventions, the Army Field Manual, and the laws of the United States."

The complaint is the latest against CACI, which has faced lawsuits since 2004.

© 2008 Agence France Presse

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