Marine Alexander Blackman sentenced to life in prison for murder of Afghan insurgent (From Somerset County Gazette)
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Marine Alexander Blackman sentenced to life in prison for murder of Afghan insurgent
3:49pm Friday 6th December 2013 in News
A ROYAL Marine from Taunton who murdered an injured Afghan insurgent will serve at least ten years in prison.
Sgt Alexander Wayne Blackman, 39, was given a life sentence by a court martial today (December 6).
Blackman, who was named for the first time yesterday, was told he will have to serve a minimum of ten years before being eligible for parole.
The experienced non-commissioned officer, known as Marine A throughout his trial, was found guilty by a court martial board last month of executing a Taliban prisoner in Helmand Province.
The court heard Blackman shot the insurgent in the chest at close range with a 9mm pistol after a patrol base in Helmand came under attack from small arms fire.
Blackman was filmed by a camera mounted on the helmet of one of the other marines, who was cleared.
His anonymity was lifted after a ruling in the High Court. Two other marines were acquitted but their anonymity will remain in place at least until the court publishes its full judgement and lawyers decide whether to appeal.
All three marines denied murdering the Afghan in September 2011, contrary to section 42 of the Armed Forces Act 2006.
Blackman, a member of 42 Commando in Plymouth, is the first British serviceman since at least the Second World War to be convicted of murder during an overseas deployment.