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  1. ITV Report

Support grows for Marine A after appeal granted

Sergeant Blackman was jailed for shooting a wounded Afghan soldier at close range Photo: MOD

The former commanding officer of Royal Marine Alexander Blackman has welcomed the decision to grant a fresh appeal in the case.

The 42 year-old from Taunton, also known as Marine A, is serving a life sentence for murdering an Afghan insurgent but an independent review concluded he faces the "real possibility" of having his conviction quashed following the presentation of new evidence.

His former commanding officer, Colonel Oliver Lee, who resigned his commission in protest soon after Blackman was sentenced, said he was "extremely pleased".

Plymouth MP Johnny Mercer made a speech in parliament over the case, which he said made him "extremely uncomfortable" because of the "mitigating circumstances":

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Blackman was found guilty of murder at a court martial at the Military Court Centre in Bulford, Wiltshire, in 2013.

However, the presentation of new evidence relating to Blackman's mental health at the time of the death in Helmand means the case will now return to the court.