Zimbabwe Court Frees U.S. Health Workers on Bail

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Four U.S. medical missionaries sponsored by a California church are free on bail after they were arrested in the African nation of Zimbabwe last Friday.

The medical team sponsored by Oakland's Allen Temple Baptist Church was accused of illegally operating a clinic for AIDS orphans and handing out medicine without a medial license. The American team is made up of one doctor, two nurses and a community volunteer.

A doctor from Zimbabwe and a doctor from New Zealand were also arrested by Zimbabwean authorities.

The missionaries were ordered by the local court to stay in Zimbabwe until their trial and also had to surrender their passports.

American citizens Gloria Cox Crowell, 48, Dr. Anthony Eugene Jones, 39, Gregory Renard Miller, 64 and David Greenburg, 62, were thronged by children and family members from their Christian congregation as they left the courthouse.

Defense attorney Jonathan Samukange described the alleged offenses as minor. He said the professional medical team had treated more than 3,000 patients in the past week.

"They were arrested in the scope of their duty. I am very embarrassed by the actions of our government in arresting people who are doing charity work. They are Christians. not criminals," he said.

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