hicks trial up to wolfowitz

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    Hicks still without military defence team

    US officials involved in the investigation into alleged Australian terrorist David Hicks say he has not yet been assigned a military defence team.

    Mr Hicks is one of six detainees who have been deemed eligible for trial by US President George W Bush.

    The man overseeing the defence for all six of the detainees, US Colonel Will Gunn, has not met any of them in person and probably will not.

    Instead he will most likely leave that to individual military lawyers who will be assigned to each case if charges are laid.

    Mr Hicks does not yet have a Pentagon-assigned lawyer for his defence.

    His family has appointed a civilian legal team on his behalf but the US Government may deny them access to the trial.

    A Pentagon prosecutor is currently collecting evidence about Mr Hicks, who has been in custody at Guantanamo Bay for 18 months.

    Prosecutors will give their material to US Deputy Defence Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, who has the final say about whether to lay formal charges.

    The US has not confirmed that the trials will take place at Guantanamo Bay although sources close to the investigation are indicating it is highly likely.

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