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Pakistani court denies diplomatic immunity for CIA contractor

By the CNN Wire Staff
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Pakistan: CIA contractor trial delayed
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: The Lahore High Court will take up the matter on March 14
  • U.S. officials originally say Raymond Davis was a diplomat and later revealed he is a CIA contractor
  • The court says neither Davis nor the Pakistani government provided documents proving that he was a diplomat

(CNN) -- A Pakistani provincial court ruled Thursday that Raymond Davis, the CIA contractor accused of killing two Pakistani men, does not have diplomatic immunity.

The court in Lahore was responding to a personal application that Davis filed last week asking that he be released from jail because he has diplomatic immunity.

The court said Davis didn't enjoy diplomatic immunity because neither he nor the Pakistani government provided documents proving that he was a diplomat, according to Asad Manzoor Butt, a defense lawyer for the shooting victims.

Davis has yet to be formally charged in the case.

On March 14, the Lahore High Court will take up the matter again when the federal government will submit its opinion on whether Davis enjoys immunity.

On Thursday, the provincial court had been expected to read out charges against Davis. However, lawyers for the American told the court that they had not yet received all documents of alleged evidence against Davis.

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The court adjourned the case until Tuesday when additional documents will be provided to Davis' legal team.

The case has strained relations between the United States and Pakistan, a key ally in the war against al Qaeda and the Taliban in neighboring Afghanistan, and the shooting deaths have outraged many Pakistanis.

Davis has said the January 27 shooting occurred after two men attacked him as he drove through a busy Lahore neighborhood, according to the U.S. Embassy.

U.S. officials originally said Davis was a diplomat and later revealed he is a CIA contractor, intensifying the already highly charged situation.

From CNN's Samson Desta and journalist Nasir Habib

 
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