Conflict & Justice

Bradley Manning Found Not Guilty of Aiding the Enemy

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Army Private Bradley Manning, center, is escorted out of court after the verdict was read at his military trial at Fort Meade, Maryland (Photo: REUTERS/James Lawler Duggan)

This was judgment day for Army Private Bradley Manning; the man who behind the largest leak of classified information in US history.

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(This story is based on a radio interview. Listen to the full interview.)

Manning admitted to providing a massive trove of sensitive government documents to the anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks back in 2010.

He still faced a seven week court martial, and on Tuesday the military judge presiding over the case read her verdict.

The 25-year-old former intelligence analyst was acquitted of the most serious charge against him: aiding the enemy.

But he was convicted of most of the others, including espionage, computer fraud and theft, as well as breaches of military discipline.

For these he could face a maximum 136 years in military prison. Sentencing begins on Wednesday.

According to Ed Pilkington of Britain's Guardian newspaper, who was at the courthouse in Fort Meade, Maryland, Manning's family is disappointed he faces so much jail time but pleased he was found not guilty of aiding the enemy "as Bradley Manning had not ever intended to give benefit to the enemy. All he'd wanted to do was inspire a debate among the American people."

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