BRADLEY MANNING SENTENCED TO 35 YEARS IN PRISON

Daily Telegraph, London, on August 21, 2013, reported that Bradley Manning was jailed for 35 years for the largest intelligence leak in US history. Excerpts below:

After a 20-month court martial, a military judge took less than two minutes to sentence the 25-year-old soldier and order him to be dishonourably discharged from the Army for passing thousands of classified files to the anti-secrecy website.

Under military law he will be eligible for parole after serving 10 years, or a third of his sentence, whichever is sooner.

Having served three and a half years, and with 112 days taken off by the judge because the Army broke the law by keeping him in solitary confinement for nine months, Manning could in theory be released in around seven years.

Manning was convicted in July on 20 of the 22 charges against him, including six counts of espionage. However, the judge cleared him of the most serious charge of aiding the enemy, which could have carried a life sentence with no chance of parole. Col Lind also demoted him from private first class to private and ordered him to forfeit all pay and benefits.

The Obama administration has brought prosecutions against seven alleged leakers, more than all previous US administrations combined. Among them is Edward Snowden, the fugitive former NSA contractor who has been granted temporary asylum in Russia.

Manning’s sentence will be reviewed by the Army Court of Criminal Appeals and could go before the US Supreme Court.

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