Marine is spared jail for massacre


A US Marine accused of leading a massacre of 24 Iraqi civilians in Haditha in 2005 was spared jail when he was sentenced by a military court yesterday, causing outrage in Iraq.

Staff Sergeant Frank Wuterich, 31, of Meriden, Connecticut, was demoted to private and had his pay cut.

He originally faced 152 years in prison for involuntary manslaughter and aggravated assault. But these charges were dropped as part of a plea deal, and he instead admitted one count of negligent dereliction of duty.

Charges against six other Marines were dropped, and another was acquitted.