Guantanamo Detainees Plead Guilty and Offer Testimony Against Alleged Mastermind in Historic Plea Deal


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Bin Lep, 47, and Bin Amin, 48, pleaded guilty to five of the nine charges against them, according to Benar News, marking the first time they had entered a plea since they were brought to Guantanamo some 17 years ago.

Charges related to the 2003 attack on the Marriott Hotel in Jakarta that killed 11 people were dropped as part of a plea deal, according to The New York Times, and the men agreed to give evidence against alleged Indonesian mastermind Encep Nurjaman, also known as Hambali.

Bin Lep and Bin Amin were acccused of being Hambali’s accomplices and charged alongside him, but their cases were separated last year.

The Malaysians will be sentenced next week, after which they are expected to be returned home.

Hambali, who was once described by former US President George W Bush as “one of the world’s most lethal terrorists”, is still to go on trial.

Through his lawyers, Hambali has alleged that he was brutally tortured following his arrest in Thailand in 2003, after which he says he was transferred to a secret detention camp run by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and tortured as part of the agency’s rendition, detention and and interrogation (RDI) programme, which is sometimes referred to as the “torture programme”.

In October 2002, a series of assaults on nightclubs in Bali resulted in the most devastating act of terrorism in Indonesia’s history, prompting a massive crackdown on radical organizations, such as Jemaah Islamiyah (JI), and a significant enhancement of Jakarta’s counterterrorism measures.

In 2008, three of the primary individuals responsible for the bombings were sentenced to capital punishment and were subsequently executed. A fourth individual, Ali Imron, was imprisoned for life after expressing regret and apologizing for his involvement in the attacks.

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