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Trial Of Bosnian Refugee Charged Wartime Crime Allows Witnesses To Videoconference

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Credit: MILE JELESIJEVIC/AFP/Getty Images

Credit: MILE JELESIJEVIC/AFP/Getty Images

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ROANOKE, Va. (AP) — The Virginia trial of a former Bosnia prison guard charged with naturalization fraud will include videoconference testimony from two witnesses in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

U.S. District Judge James Turk ruled this week that the two-way videoconference testimony won’t violate Almaz Nezirovic’s ((AL’-mahz nez-uh-ROH’-vick) Sixth Amendment right to confront the witnesses against him.

Turk’s ruling says both witnesses have health problems. One also has financial concerns about traveling to the U.S. to testify.

The procedure also will allow cross-examination.

Nezirovic is charged with illegally concealing his wartime activities when he later applied for refugee status and naturalization in the U.S. The indictment alleges that Nezirovic abused Serb civilian detainees during the war in the former Yugoslavia in 1992.

The trial is set to begin July 2.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

So the U.S. judge ruled that allowing witnesses to testify via the internet does not violate the defendant’s 6th amendment rights. Do you think this could establish a dangerous precedent? Let us know below…

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