The audio. which came from one Marine's helmet-mounted camera, was released as the judge summed up the evidence at their court martial
Royal marines are heard laughing at a comrade’s offer to shoot a wounded Taliban fighter in the head on recordings of an alleged execution released yesterday.
The audio clips captured on a helmet camera in Afghanistan were heard at the court martial of three men, known only as Marines A, B and C, who are charged with murdering the insurgent.
After finding the seriously hurt enemy soldier lying in a field after an Apache helicopter attack, Marine C says: “I’ll put one in his head, if you want.”
Laughter is heard from others, before Marine A says: “No, not in his head, ’cause that’ll be f****** obvious.”
Later a single shot is heard, followed by groans from the man whose name, age and nationality are not known.
After the shot is fired, Marine A can be heard telling him: “There you are. Shuffle off this mortal coil you c***. It’s nothing you wouldn’t do to us.”
The two audio clips were taken from a six-minute video of the marines on patrol in Helmand Province on September 15, 2011.
But Judge Advocate General Jeff Blackett ruled that the accompanying graphic video footage must not be released.
He told the court martial in Bulford, Wiltshire, its issue could be used as propaganda by terror groups.
He added: “More importantly to release it would increase the threat of harm to British service personnel.”
Judge Blackett permitted the issue of 11 stills from the video, captured on the camera worn by Marine B.
They show the backs of the Marines but do not feature their alleged victim.
The video footage, which has been shown to a panel of seven serving servicemen, shows the Royal Marine patrol standing outside a field of tall crops, with an Apache helicopter audible overhead.
They can be heard swearing and complaining about their task of carrying out a battle damage assessment after the Apache attack.
During the trial, the court martial heard the insurgent had been shot at with 139 30mm anti-tank rounds but was still alive, albeit seriously injured, when discovered by the patrol.
One commando can be heard asking: “Why didn’t they use a f***ing rocket?”, another replies “F*** me, it’s just error after error after error.” Marines A and C are then seen scouting out the field, locating the Afghan before calling the others over.
As Marine B walks towards them, the camera captures its first shot of the seriously injured insurgent – lying on the ground covered in blood.
The patrol drags the man across the field and into a wooded area nearby, throwing him to the ground.
The injured man, carrying a gun and a grenade, according to the audio transcript, suffers kicks from the servicemen, who then flip him from back to front.
Marine A is seen walking forward, bending down, and shooting the man in the chest with a 9mm pistol.
Giving evidence to the court martial, Marine A insisted he believed the insurgent was dead at the time and was shooting into a corpse in anger.
After shooting the man, Marine A is seen turning to the other members of the patrol and telling them: “Obviously this doesn’t go anywhere fellas”.
“I just broke the Geneva Convention.”
The three marines deny murder and the panel retired to consider verdicts.
The hearing continues today.