Prosecutor removed from war crimes case against Navy SEAL

Prosecutor removed from war crimes case against Navy SEAL
© Washington Examiner

A military judge on Monday reportedly took a prosecutor off the case of a Navy SEAL accused of war crimes after allegations of misconduct. 

Capt. Aaron Rugh removed Cmdr. Christopher Czaplak, the lead of the prosecution in Edward Gallagher's case, after defense attorneys accused the prosecution of spying on emails, according to The Associated Press

The judge said that he did not have the authority to determine if Czaplak broke professional rules, but added that the potential for an inquiry meant that he needed to be removed, according to the AP. 

Defense attorney Tim Parlatore praised the decision. 

“There’s no way he should be allowed to continue on this case,” he told the news service. “We’re still hopeful the entire case will be dismissed.”

The trial for Gallagher, who has been charged with murder and attempted murder, was expected to begin June 10, the AP noted, adding that it could now be delayed.

Gallagher has been accused of killing a teenage combatant in 2017 and shooting civilians from a sniper’s perch. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges. 

Rugh also said he would determine whether to dismiss the charges against Gallagher by late Wednesday, according to the AP.  

Gallagher is one of multiple service members who have been charged with or convicted of crimes for whom President TrumpDonald John TrumpDemocratic senator rips Trump's 'let them fight' remarks: 'Enough is enough' Warren warns Facebook may help reelect Trump 'and profit off of it' Trump touts Turkey cease-fire: 'Sometimes you have to let them fight' MORE is reportedly considering a pardon. Republican lawmakers have also expressed support for the Navy SEAL.