Afganistan Murder Soldier 'Marine A' Named as Alexander Blackman

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By Dominic Gover | December 5, 2013 11:24 PM EST

Sergeant Alexander Wayne Blackman

The marine convicted of murder after he executed an injured Taliban fighter in Afghanistan has been named as Sgt Alexander Blackman.

Blackman was known as Marine A during his murder trial because of fears that his family could be targeted in revenge attacks by fundamentalist Muslims. But Lord Chief Justice Lord Thomas and two other judges at the High Court ruled that keeping his identity secret would undermine the principle of open justice.

Blackman, of Somerset, is due to be sentenced on Friday. He was the first serving British soldier to be convicted of murder in the field since World War II.

He shot a wounded Taliban fighter who was lying on the ground in the chest with a pistol while telling him: "Shuffle off this mortal coil, you c**t." The incident, in September 2011, was captured on a soldier's helmet-mounted camera in footage which was played at his trial. 

After killing the man, Blackman tells his two comrades in the video that he has broken the Geneva Convention and tells them to keep quiet about the incident.

The court martial heard that 39-year-old Blackman was nearing the end of a "tour of hell," during which Taliban insurgents had hung the dismembered limbs of British soldiers from trees. The court was told that he had been "pushed beyond endurance" by heavy fighting.

Two other soldiers, known as marines D and E were cleared of murder. Charges were dropped against two more men - marines C and D.  

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