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Cablegate: Marine Case: Another Defendant Speaks to Media

VZCZCXYZ0009
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHML #2969 1980914
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 170914Z JUL 06
FM AMEMBASSY MANILA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 2028
INFO RHHMUNA/CDRUSPACOM HONOLULU HI IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC IMMEDIATE

UNCLAS MANILA 002969

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL MARR KCRM CASC RP
SUBJECT: MARINE CASE: ANOTHER DEFENDANT SPEAKS TO MEDIA

REF: MANILA 2962 AND PREVIOUS

1. LCpl Daniel Smith, one of the four marines currently on
trial for alleged rape, gave an interview to the Associated
Press on Saturday July 15. Local media featured his remarks
extensively. He talked about how his "life has come to a
screeching halt" due to the alleged incident and trial, and
how his family is "praying for the day that I tell them I'm
cleared of all these allegations." LCpl Smith said he "just
can't understand why she (the complainant) would do this to
me. When I met her she seemed like a really nice person."
He also said that, if given the chance to talk to the accused
now, he would simply ask "Why?" LCpl Smith added that his
family was "stressed beyond belief" but that family members
are being "as good as they can be, with their son being
accused in a foreign country." LCpl Smith also noted that he
has said 'no' several times to his family coming to the
Philippines to visit him because he knows "it would be even
harder for them to leave me." LCpl Smith did not answer
questions about the case or give his own version of what
happened on November 1, 2005.

2. After a courtroom encounter with a journalist, apparently
he agreed to answer some written questions. One of LCpl
Smith's attorneys, Patricia Formosa, facilitated this
interview by delivering questions from the AP and from the
Philippine Star, to LCpl Smith. He and Ms. Formosa answered
the questions together, after which Ms. Formosa delivered the
written responses back to the AP and the Star.

3. Embassy personnel and III MEF handlers were unaware that
LCpl Smith intended to give this interview and did not know
that the interview even took place until the local media
coverage broke on July 17. We are re-doubling our efforts to
ensure that all four marines are aware of the procedures to
be followed should they wish to deal with the media.
Kenney

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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