Army prosecutors filed charges Tuesday against a sixth soldier in a plot to murder Afghan civilians for sport during patrols in Kandahar province last year.
Staff Sgt. David Bram, of California, now faces charges that include solicitation to commit premeditated murder, aggravated assault on Afghan nationals, failing to report crimes including murder, planting evidence and unlawfully discussing murder scenarios with subordinates.
Army prosecutors say the soldiers from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, south of Seattle, killed three Afghan civilians during the patrols, in each case by finding isolated men, pretending they posed a threat, and slaughtering them with guns or grenades.
One soldier, then-Cpl. Jeremy Morlock of Wasilla, Alaska, has pleaded guilty in a deal to testify against his co-defendants and was sentenced to 24 years in prison. The others are awaiting courts martial.
Army Maj. Kathleen Turner, a spokeswoman for the base, said she did not immediately have further details about the charges filed against Bram or know the identity of any civilian lawyer who might be representing him.
Bram had previously been among seven soldiers from the unit who faced misconduct charges unrelated to the killings, including allegations of beating up a soldier who blew the whistle on drug use by his colleagues.