Jury selection is under way in Miami for the torture trial of former Liberian President Charles Taylor's son.

The case against Charles McArthur Emmanuel marks the first use of a 14-year-old federal law making it a crime for a U.S. citizen to commit torture overseas. Emmanuel, also known as Chuckie Taylor, was born in Boston.

Prosecutors say he joined his father in Liberia in 1997 and led a unit that tortured, intimidated and killed government opponents. Emmanuel has pleaded not guilty.

Jury selection is expected to last several days, with opening statements likely next week.

Also Wednesday, a federal judge rejected a U.S. attempt to close court for testimony of one witness who has an undisclosed psychological problem.