The criminal proceedings against Capt. James J. Yee, the former Muslim chaplain at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, fell into confusion on Tuesday and stalled as the military prosecutors asked for extra time to determine whether documents that were found in Captain Yee’s luggage when he was leaving the base were, in fact, classified. The hearing was postponed until Jan. 19 to give the prosecutors time to review the documents that set off a major investigation into whether Captain Yee was a spy, a contention from which the government has since emphatically distanced itself. The military’s case against Captain Yee ostensibly began when customs officials found documents they believed were suspicious and possibly containing classified materials in his backpack on Sept. 10 when he arrived from Guantánamo at the naval air station in Jacksonville, Fla. Officials initially thought Captain Yee might have been part of an elaborate plan to infiltrate the Caribbean base, where some 660 prisoners from the Afghan war are being held. Officials placed Captain Yee in solitary confinement for nearly three months in a naval brig while they completed their investigation into possible espionage. Maj. Scott Sikes, one of Captain Yee’s defense lawyers, said on Tuesday that military prosecutors once told him that they might seek the death penalty in the case. Full Story
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