Monday 16 September 2019

Manning freed after refusing to testify on WikiLeaks - but could be back behind bars after new subpoena


Subpoena: Chelsea Manning. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, File)
Subpoena: Chelsea Manning. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, File)

Adam Withnall

The former US intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning has been released from prison after she was jailed for refusing to testify to a grand jury investigating WikiLeaks.

Ms Manning spent 62 days in jail on contempt charges but was released as the term of the grand jury she was supposed to give evidence to expired.

However, the ex-army employee, who served seven years of a 35-year sentence for handing a huge trove of confidential documents to WikiLeaks, could be back in jail within a week.

She has received another subpoena demanding she testify to a new grand jury, opening on May 16.

Under US federal law, a person subpoenaed by a grand jury can be jailed on a civil contempt charge if judges believe it has a chance of coercing them to give evidence.

Earlier this week, Ms Manning's lawyers filed court papers arguing that she should not be jailed again because she has proven that she will stick to her principles and will not testify no matter how long she is jailed.

Ms Manning filed an eight-page statement with the court on Monday outlining her resolve.

She wrote that "co-operation with this grand jury is simply not an option".

"Doing so would mean throwing away all of my principles, accomplishments, sacrifices, and erase decades of my reputation - an obvious impossibility," she wrote. (© Independent News Service)

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