Image Copyright: Patrick Semansky / AP
By David Dishneau
Copyright: The Associated Press
An Army general has upheld Pvt. Chelsea Manning’s conviction and 35-year prison sentence for giving reams of classified U.S. government information to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks, the Army said Monday.
The approval by Maj. Gen. Jeffery S. Buchanan, commander of the Military District of Washington, clears the way for an automatic appeal to the Army Court of Criminal Appeals.
Manning’s appellate lawyers, Nancy Hollander and Vincent Ward, told supporters Sunday in Washington that they expect to argue that the sentence unreasonable. It is the longest prison term ever given by a U.S. court for leaking government secrets to the media. They said they also expect to argue that Manning’s speedy trial rights were violated, that the Espionage Act was misused and that high-ranking commanders improperly influenced her case.