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Jun 19,2007
U.S. won't appear in Rome trial
by UPI

ROME - The United States government said it can't be tried in Rome with a U.S. soldier accused of murder in the Iraq shooting death of an Italian intelligence agent.

The U.S. Department of Defense has told Italian officials that as a sovereign state the United States cannot be tried, sources told the ANSA news agency.

Prosecutors want to try the U.S. government for its alleged "civil responsibility" in the death of agent Nicola Calipari, who was shot by U.S. soldiers in March 2005 as he accompanied a released Italian hostage to the Baghdad airport.

U.S. soldier Mario Luis Lozano faces murder and two attempted murder charges in the checkpoint shooting. He is being represented by a lawyer at the trial but will not attend, ANSA reported.

Lozano has said he followed the rules of engagement when he shot at a car carrying Calipari at a checkpoint. A U.S. investigation cleared the U.S. military in the shootings, but an Italian inquiry resulted in the charges.

The trial, which has been adjourned twice, was scheduled to resume July 10, ANSA said.

Copyright ©  2007, by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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