Bradley Manning Has Bad Day in Court
Judge won't dismiss his most serious charge, aiding the enemy
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 18, 2013 1:10 PM CDT
Army Pfc. Bradley Manning is escorted to a waiting security vehicle outside of a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md., on July 15.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

(Newser) – Bradley Manning's chances of spending the rest of his life in prison rose today after a judge refused to dismiss the most serious charge against him—aiding the enemy, reports the BBC. Prosecutors say he knew full well that his leaked documents would end up in the hands of al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden himself, and the judge today rejected the defense team's effort to drop the charge because of a lack of evidence.

It carries a sentence of life without parole, but today's ruling doesn't mean Manning is doomed. Prosecutors will need to meet the tougher beyond-a-reasonable-doubt standard to get an actual conviction, reports the AP. Manning already has pleaded guilty to some lesser charges and faces up to 20 years on those alone. His defense team is hoping to avoid further time.

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Showing 3 of 32 comments
Ucantusethatname
Jul 18, 2013 7:26 PM CDT
How did an Army private ever get access to secret documents?. The Army screwed up. Manning's deed was a public service. He deserves a medal.
MrGBOOK
Jul 18, 2013 7:04 PM CDT
You bloodthirsty people should know the facts before forming your lynching party. Go to "I am Bradley Manning" on Youtube and learn something! Manning should never have been charged, he should have been given a medal. The information he released not only has NOT cost any lives - it has saved lives. The helicopter crew shown killing innocent men, women & children - including a RED CROSS ambulance crew, continued executing civilians when crews & simple bystanders attempted to remove the bodies from the road. The video & chilling audio of the gleeful assassins enjoying their work like it was a video game should have put THEM on trial - not Manning. He is a "Whistleblower", entitled to protection under that law, if he had been a civilian. But even in the military he is required to report illegal acts and showed extraordinary courage making this devastating information available. The shame is that the military has buried the true crimes and instead made Manning the criminal & in such a crushing manner as to insure any one else considering reporting criminal acts will be silenced for fear they too would be treated like Manning. And unlike Snowden - Manning didn't go to foreign papers or countries. He tried the NY Times & Washington Post & has remained here to face all that the government could throw at him and has even plead guilty to the charges his lawyers agree he may have unwittingly committed in his efforts to get the worst information public! The real question is what would we prefer: That those who uncover wrong doing ignore it, leave it hidden & buried? No, that is why whistleblower laws & even in the military new laws were put in place for those who have uncovered - or been given orders to commit, illegal acts. This is why some of our Countries most respected voices join together on the video I suggested above and in other efforts to free Manning &/or bring the facts of his case to light. Check it out - before being in such a hurry to place the noose around his neck.
Kookey90
Jul 18, 2013 6:27 PM CDT
Hopefully this will just be one of many bad days that Manning will be experiencing for the rest of his miserable life. Forget life in prison, just let him loose for ten minutes in front of a formation of troops that just returned from the desert who had buds killed or wounded there; that should just about do it.