A U.S. army war deserter who fled his unit in Iraq in 2005 and moved to British Columbia will return to the United States tomorrow and turn himself into the military.

Kyle Snyder, 23, said he decided to cross the border because of the leniency granted to fellow U.S. deserter Darrell Anderson, who was given a less than honourable discharge earlier this month.

Anderson, 24, also served in Iraq and was living in Toronto before he turned himself into the military. Anderson and Snyder met each other while in Canada awaiting refugee board hearings."If I have the opportunity to be able to go back home and travel freely, then that's what I want to do," Snyder told the Star. "It's been a thought in my head, but it's never been an option until Darrell returned himself.

"Snyder believed he would face a court martial and be imprisoned for deserting his unit in April 2005. He left Iraq, where he served almost four months as a gunner, after being granted leave to visit a woman in Prince George, B.C.

He said he didn't return to his unit because he believed the Iraq war was "illegal and immoral." Snyder said he witnessed a friend shoot an innocent Iraqi civilian in Mosul. He also believes a blindfolded Iraqi man was executed by the U.S. military in Mosul's city hall.

"It just didn't make sense to me why I was there," he said.Chicago lawyer Jim Fennerty will be acting for Snyder, and expects his case will have a similar outcome to Anderson's, whom he also represented.