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US Military Judge to Sentence Wikileaks Source on Wednesday

A U.S. military judge says she will impose sentence Wednesday on the Army private convicted of disclosing a vast collection of classified information to the anti-secrecy site WikiLeaks.

The judge, Colonel Denise Lind, deliberated about the case against 25-year-old Private First Class Bradley Manning on Tuesday. She set the sentencing for Wednesday morning at the Fort Meade military base in (the eastern state of) Maryland where Manning's court martial has been held.

In closing arguments Monday, an Army prosecutor, Captain Joe Morrow, said Manning should be sentenced to a 60-year term for leaking more than 700,000 documents to WikiLeaks. It was the largest leak of secret information in U.S. history.

Morrow said Manning's leak of U.S. State Department diplomatic cables and American battlefield reports from Iraq and Afghanistan was "destructive."

But Manning's defense lawyers pleaded with Lind for leniency. Defense attorney David Coombs called for a sentence that "doesn't rob him of his youth." He said Manning can be rehabilitated and should not "rot in jail."

Lind has convicted Manning of 20 offenses, including espionage, and he could face up to 90 years in prison.

Last week, Manning apologized for hurting the U.S., and he pleaded with Lind for a chance to go to college and become a productive citizen.

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