Defense Base Act Compensation Blog

The Modern Day DBA Casualty

ArmorGroup Security Contractor Danny Fitzsimons Must Wait To Hear Death Sentence Verdict

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on February 20, 2011

Iraqi judges presiding over the trial of a British security contractor accused of murdering two colleagues have adjourned proceedings once again

According to Fitzsimons’ legal team, the request for more reports is a sign the judges are taking the issue of PTSD seriously.

Ursula Errington, Sky News correspondent

The adjournment in the trial of Danny Fitzsimons was called so judges could consider more evidence relating to the former paratrooper’s psychological state.

Mr Fitzsimons admits shooting former Royal Marine Paul McGuigan and Australian ex-airman Darren Hoare in August 2009 after the three private security contractors had been on a whisky-drinking binge.

But he says he did only so in self-defence after the two men attacked him.

He also maintains he suffers from severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after serving in Kosovo, Bosnia, Iraq, Afghanistan and Northern Ireland.

He has pleaded guilty to manslaughter with diminished responsibility, but not guilty to murder.

Judges will reconvene on February 28 after ordering further reports on how traumatic experiences may have effected him.

According to Fitzsimons’ legal team, the request for more reports is a sign the judges are taking the issue of PTSD seriously.

The 30-year-old, from Rochdale, is the first Westerner to be tried in Iraq since immunity for foreign security workers was lifted in 2009.

If convicted of murder he could face the death penalty.

His legal team are likely to appeal to Iraqi authorities to allow him to serve any prison sentence back in the UK.

Fitzsimons believes “(I’m) a dead man” if he is moved from his cell inside the Green Zone to Baghdad’s Russaffa prison.

As a former British soldier turned private security contractor, he thinks he may be a target for other inmates.

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