A copy of the 15-page charge sheet against Khan posted on a Pentagon website Tuesday night indicated that the prison camps staff attorney, Navy Cmdr. Thomas Welsh, presented Khan with the charges a day earlier. Attorneys Dixon and Jestin said they were there, too.
The charges, and a Defense Department announcement, identified the accused terrorist as Majid Shoukat Khan, perhaps in a bid to make a distinction between him and a famed former Pakistan cricket team captain also named Majid Khan.
The next step is for a senior Pentagon official, retired Vice Adm. Bruce MacDonald, to review the charges and decide how, when and whether to go forward with a trial by military commission at Guantánamo. MacDonald is currently reviewing seven-month-old capital charges against five alleged 9/11 conspirators, including Mohammed, to decide whether it should go forward as a death penalty case.
Meantime, the chief war crimes prosecutor, Brig. Army Gen. Mark Martins, assigned a Justice Department lawyer, Courtney Sullivan, to prosecute the case with help from Army Lt. Col. Michael Hosang and Navy Lt. Nathaniel Gross at the court system that was created after the 9/11 attacks and borrows from both the federal and military court martial systems.
In separate Guantánamo developments Tuesday:
• The chief war court judge refused a subpoena request by the lawyers for the alleged USS Cole bomber that sought to question Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who is now in New York for medical treatment. Saleh has diplomatic immunity, according to the State Department, but war court defense lawyers argued that didn’t protect him from questioning about al-Qaida’s bombing of the warship off Aden, Yemen, in October 2000.
• The Navy announced that the prison camps commander, Rear Adm. David B. Woods, will move later this year to a San Diego post. Woods, who has been embroiled in a legal mail controversy since soon after taking charge of the detention center in August, would complete a full year, said his spokeswoman, Cmdr. Tamsen Reese.