Military Sexual Assault Charges Can Cross International Borders

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Q: Can a soldier based in one country be charged with sexual crimes allegedly committed in another country?

A prospective court-martial for sexual assault, voyeurism, and other serious charges allegedly committed by a corporal in the 5th Canadian Division Support Base, Gagetown (“5CDSB”) involves not only two alleged victims, but spans two different countries. In an effort to protect the identities of the two member victims, all identifying information including their ages, ranks, and genders have been withheld.

The alleged victims were both members of the Canadian Armed Forces in Washington and Esquimalt, B.C. at the time the alleged incidents happened.

After the Washington-based member allegedly discovered a recording device “at their private residence” and reported it to superiors, an investigation ensued after which the device was allegedly “linked to the accused”. That led to a search warrant and the subsequent seizure of multiple computers, hard drives and similar media storage devices–one of which reportedly contained “a video of an alleged sexual assault against a member at CFB Esquimalt in 2011.”

The corporal was reportedly arrested and charged with:

  • “sexual assault
  • ·voyeurism
  • interception
  • breaking and entering
  • possession of property obtained by crime
  • theft
  • transmission of an intimate image
  • possession of a device for surreptitious interception
  • possession of child pornography”. 

If convicted of certain charges, he may face a sentence of life in prison. So preparing the best court martial defense is critical.

Facing a court-martial– or appealing a court-martial decision– is frightening. With your livelihood, reputation, and freedom on the line, it’s in your best interest to hire an experienced civilian military defense attorney with the time, knowledge, experience, and resources to dedicate to your defense – – instead of taking your chances with the free court-appointed military defense counsel you are offered. In an effort to bolster its conviction rates, it’s common for the military to assign large teams of the best trial lawyers to prosecute court-martials, while providing a significantly less-experienced and often overworked in-house military defense attorney to represent an accused. Can you afford to go to battle on such an uneven battlefield?

If you are– or expect to be– facing a court-martial (or need to appeal a court-martial decision) for sexual assault, sexual misconduct, child pornography, or other charges, the skilled court-martial law attorneys at Colorado-based Elkus, Sisson & Rosenstein have the experience to aggressively defend the sensitive charges. Call us today at 719-247-3111 for a free consultation. We have successfully represented soldiers of all ranks in all branches of the military, at home as well as abroad. 

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