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US Calls for 60-Year Sentence in WikiLeaks Security Disclosures

  • VOA News

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning is escorted out of a courthouse after receiving a verdict in his court-martial, in Fort Meade, Maryland, July 2013.
U.S. military prosecutors are recommending a 60-year prison term for the Army private convicted of disclosing a vast array of classified information to the anti-secrecy site WikiLeaks.

An Army prosecutor, Captain Joe Morrow, told a military judge Monday that 25-year-old Private First Class Bradley Manning deserves to "spend the majority of his remaining life in confinement," after leaking more than 700,000 documents to WikiLeaks.

Morrow rejected a claim by Manning's defense attorneys that he was a troubled soldier who thought he was doing good by exposing U.S. State Department diplomatic cables and American battlefield reports from Iraq and Afghanistan. The prosecutor called the leaks "destructive" and he described Manning as a "determined insider who exploited an imperfect system."

The judge, Colonel Denise Lind, has convicted Manning of 20 offenses, including espionage. She said she would start deliberating Tuesday on what sentence to impose.

Manning could face up to 90 years in prison.

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