Philippines A U.S. Marine convicted of raping a Filipino woman was whisked away from a Manila jail to the U.S. Embassy on Friday, a spokesman said, almost a month after the U.S. and Philippine governments urged a local court to transfer him to American custody during his appeal.
Lance Cpl. Daniel Smith, 21, had been in a Manila jail since he was convicted and sentenced to 40 years on Dec. 4. Three other Marines were acquitted in the case. All four were in U.S. Embassy custody during the trial that stirred anti-American feelings in this former U.S. colony.
Smith's attorneys, the U.S. Embassy and the Philippine departments of justice and foreign affairs have agreed that his detention violates the 1998 Visiting Forces Agreement, which governs the conduct of U.S. troops in the Philippines. A provision in it states that any accused U.S. serviceman shall remain in U.S. custody until all judicial proceedings are exhausted.