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Verdicts split on Army officer in Abu Ghraib case

  • Story Highlights
  • The only officer to be tried in case acquitted of failing to control abuse
  • Army officer convicted of disobeying order not to discuss case
  • Lt. Col. Steven L. Jordan faces maximum sentence of five years
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(CNN) -- Lt. Col. Steven L. Jordan was acquitted Tuesday of failing to control soldiers who abused detainees at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, but he was found guilty of disobeying a general's command not to talk about the investigation.


Lt. Col. Steven L. Jordan was the only officer to go on trial in connection with the Abu Ghraib scandal.

Jordan, the only officer among the 12 defendants charged in the 2003 prison scandal, could face five years in jail, dismissal from the service and forfeiture of his pay for willfully disobeying a superior commissioned officer.

Photos shot inside the prison -- which were leaked to the news media -- showed cases of torture and sexual humiliation of detainees, and brought global condemnation.

The case in Fort Meade, Maryland, proceeds to sentencing Tuesday afternoon.

The judge in the case, Col. Stephen Henley, threw out two of the more serious charges on August 20, the first day of the court-martial. Those charges dealt with whether Jordan lied to his superior officer, Maj. Gen. George Fay.

Jordan, a reservist, was the commander of the Joint Interrogation Briefing Center at Abu Ghraib.

Maj. Gen. Guy Swan, the commanding general of the military district of Washington, referred the charges to court-martial on January 22, the Army said.

Swan dismissed four other charges after Jordan's Article 32 hearing, the military equivalent of a preliminary hearing, in October.

Although Jordan is the only officer criminally charged in the scandal, he is not the only officer punished. Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski, commander of the Abu Ghraib prison at the time, was demoted in rank to colonel because of the scandal.

Seven low-ranking guards and two military intelligence soldiers -- described by then-U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld as "bad apples" -- were disciplined after the 2003 Abu Ghraib scandal surfaced. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

CNN's Paul Courson contributed to this report.

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