GUANTANAMO BAY NAVY BASE, Cuba — A six-member U.S. military jury Thursday sentenced Osama bin Laden's driver to 66 months in prison.

With credit extended by the judge for time already served, that likely means he will serve five months before being sent back to the normal population.

Jurors deliberated just 70 minutes after a sentencing hearing in which Salim Hamdan, 40, expressed regret and apologized for any pain his actions caused victims of al-Qaida.

The U.S. government had asked the jury to sentence him to 30 years to life; Hamdan's lawyers proposed 45 months.

A day earlier, the panel convicted the father of two with a fourth-grade education of providing material support for terror as Osama bin Laden's driver and bodyguard from 1996 to his capture in Afghanistan in 2001.

The jury was made up of senior U.S. military officers, among them an Apache helicopter pilot with battlefield experience, and included two colonels and two lieutenant colonels.

It was led by a U.S. Navy captain, its most senior member, and acquitted him of a second charge of conspiracy alleging he was responsible for al-Qaida mayhem from the 1998 U.S. embassies bombings to the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks.

As of Thursday, the Defense Department reported it held "approximately 265" detainees at this remote U.S. Navy base in Cuba — about 250 run-of-the-mill enemy combatants; 16 "high-value detainees," meaning they were once held by the CIA and are in segregation at Camp 7 and one convict.

As the lone convict, his defense attorney told the judge, Hamdan was put in his own separate wing of Camp 5 Wednesday night.


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