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Lynndie England to Plead Guilty, Lawyer Says

Relatives of Army Reserve Pfc. Lynndie England (search) have accepted her decision to plead guilty to abusing Iraqi detainees at the notorious Abu Ghraib prison, a spokesman said Saturday.

"They are secure in the knowledge that she knows what she's doing," said family attorney Roy Hardy. "They're not happy, but at the same time they've accepted it."

England, who appeared in a photo that showed her holding a hooded, naked Iraqi prisoner on a leash, will plead guilty in a military court Monday to two counts of conspiracy, four counts of maltreating prisoners and one count of dereliction of duty, her civilian lawyer, Rick Hernandez (search), said Friday.

England faces a maximum sentence of 11 years in prison as part of the plea deal, which still must be accepted by a military judge, Hernandez said. She had been facing up to 16 years.

The 22-year-old reservist, who was a clerk at the prison in the Baghdad (search) area, had been scheduled to go on trial Tuesday at Fort Hood, Texas.

"In the long run it will benefit her more than not taking the plea," Hardy said of the plea agreement. "That's our understanding."

One count of committing indecent acts and one count of failure to obey a lawful order will be dismissed, Hernandez said.

England, from the West Virginia town of Fort Ashby, was one of seven members of the Maryland-based 372nd Military Police Company charged with humiliating and assaulting detainees at the prison.

England's lawyers have argued that she and others in her unit were acting on orders from military intelligence to "soften up" prisoners for interrogations. But Army investigators testified during hearings last summer that England said the reservists took the photos while "they were joking around, having some fun."

A panel of soldiers will determine England's punishment.

If England is sent to prison, her son will live with her mother and sister, Hardy said, but the family hopes she is not given the maximum 11-year sentence.

"We just want to bring her back here to West Virginia," he said. "On behalf of the family, we're confident the military will look at the evidence."

Four other members of the 372nd and two low-level military intelligence officers have entered guilty pleas, with sentences ranging from no time to 81/2 years. Pvt. Charles Graner Jr., the reputed ringleader of the abuses, is the only soldier to stand trial so far.