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Government Appeals Overturning Marine's Conviction

The government is appealing the overturning of a Camp Pendleton Marine's murder conviction in a major Iraqi war crimes case.

The Navy Judge Advocate General's Corps announced Monday that it will send the case of Sgt. Lawrence Hutchins III to the U.S. Court of Appeals of the Armed Forces.

That court can either affirm or reverse the April ruling of the U.S. Navy-Marine Corps Court of Criminal Appeals. The criminal appeals court overturned Hutchins' conviction, saying he was not given a fair trial because a judge allowed his lead defense attorney to leave shortly before his 2007 trial.

Prosecutors say Hutchins led a squad of seven troops who killed an unarmed man in Hamdania in 2006. The 26-year-old Marine was sentenced to 11 years.