21.06.2024

Former Navy SEAL who claims he killed Osama bin Laden arrested

The former Navy SEAL who claims to have shot and killed Osama bin Laden has been arrested in Texas. Robert O’Neill, 47, was booked into jail in Frisco on Wednesday and released later that day on a $3,500 bond, reported The Dallas Morning News.

He was charged with a Class A misdemeanour of assault causing bodily injury and a Class C misdemeanour charge of public intoxication.

Mr O’Neill was a member of SEAL Team 6 during the famed 2011 mission and subsequently claimed that he had fired the shots which killed the al Qaeda leader and September 11 mastermind at his Pakistan compound.

Mr O’Neill had been in the Dallas area to record a podcast at a cigar lounge, according to The New York Post.

It is not Mr O’Neill’s first run-in with law enforcement.

In 2016, he was arrested in Montana on suspicion of driving under the influence after police said they found him asleep in the driver’s seat of a vehicle with the engine still running, reported The Montana Standard. He blamed a prescription sleeping pill that he told officials he took to deal with insomnia and prosecutors dropped the charges.

He was instead charged with negligent endangerment and the prosecution was deferred while he underwent treatment.

Mr O’Neill, who is from Montana, was banned from flying on Delta Air Lines after he posted a photo of himself without a mask, when it was still required because of Covid-19.

He first made his claim that he was the person who killed Osama bin Laden in a 2014 interview with The Washington Post.

The US government has never confirmed nor denied his claim, and different accounts of the operation have clouded who actually pulled the trigger.

Some in the special operations community have criticised Mr O’Neill for breaking the code of silence associated with Naval Special Warfare.

The official version of events will likely not be de-classified for decades.

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