Pfc. Bradley Manning pleaded guilty Thursday to 10 of the 22 charges against him, but not the major one, in what the government says is the largest leak of classified documents in the nation's history. And, for the first time, he offered his rationale for the crimes.
In court, Manning detailed why and how he sent classified material to WikiLeaks, a group that facilitates the anonymous leaking of secret information through its website.
By Larry Shaughnessy
Pfc. Bradley Manning has begun testifying at his pre-trial hearing about his alleged abuse at Quantico. The Army private, accused of stealing thousands of classified documents and leaking them, spoke in a clear voice at the start of his testimony. He was wearing his Army service uniform, wire-rimmed glasses.
Manning's defense team wants to make the case his harsh treatment in prison should count as time served.
Earlier, a military judge ruled Thursday that new charges would have to be filed before Manning could enter a guilty plea to some lesser charges.
The defense has said it plans to have Manning plead guilty to lesser offenses and fight other charges as being too extreme.
At a pretrial hearing at Fort Meade the military judge, Col. Denise Lind, noted that only some of the offenses Manning is proposing to plead to are included in the current list of charges. If he were to plead guilty to these charges he would face a maximum of 16 years in prison, loss if pay, demotion to private and a dishonorable discharge.
But the judge decided other charges the defense proposed Manning plead to are irregular and would not be accepted unless a convening authority were to refer the charges to the court.
Manning has not officially told the court he will plead guilty to the charges.FULL STORY
By Larry Shaughnessy
The officer who oversaw security at the military base where Bradley Manning was held for a time said on Wednesday he was not pressured by superiors to keep the Army private accused of leaking classified documents to the WikiLeaks website in a high-level lockup and under constant watch.
Marine Col. Robert Oltman said his decision to maintain maximum-security status for Manning during his eight-month confinement in Quantico in Virginia was borne out of caution.
Oltman said at a pre-trial hearing at Fort Meade, Maryland, for Manning that he recognized the case was high profile but told subordinates at the Marine base to "do what's right" and not "worry about somebody looking over your shoulder."
Manning's lawyers are trying to get the case thrown out - or at least any sentence reduced, if he's convicted - by claiming he was mistreated at the Quantico brig from July 2010 until he was moved to the military prison at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, in April 2011.
By Mike Mount
U.S. Army private Bradley Manning is expected to take the stand for the first time this week as his lawyers plan to use his claim of mistreatment by military jailers to get his case thrown out.
The Army intelligence analyst is suspected of leaking hundreds of thousands of classified military and State Department documents while serving in Iraq. Many of them ended up on the WikiLeaks website. WikiLeaks has never confirmed that Manning was the source of the information.
Manning's lawyer, David Coombs, filed a motion last August to dismiss charges based on a claim, Manning says, of harsh treatment while held at the brig at the Marine base at Quantico, Virginia.
The pre-trial hearing that starts Tuesday at Ft. Mead, Maryland, will be the first time Manning will have spoken in court other than answering procedural questions, said Jeff Paterson, a spokesman for the Bradley Manning Support Network.
By Larry Shaughnessy
(CNN) - The Army private accused of leaking millions of government files has offered to plead guilty to some of the charges against him, his attorney announced during a court hearing Wednesday.
But this is not some kind of deal guaranteed to get Pfc. Bradley Manning a lighter sentence.
By Ashley Fantz
Julian Assange made headlines Sunday by simply stepping onto an embassy balcony in London. The same day, the young man some say made Assange famous passed his 817th day behind bars.
Army Pfc. Bradley Manning sat thousands of miles away in Kansas at Fort Leavenworth penitentiary. On a sprawling lot of farmland, Leavenworth is a historic place - once holding Al Capone and the George "Machine Gun" Kelly.
Less Capone than Beetle Bailey with his wire-rim glasses, skinny frame and computer savvy, Manning is still a notorious figure. He is suspected of being behind the largest leak of classified war time intelligence and diplomatic correspondence in United States history.
The government believes Manning downloaded hundreds of thousands of documents while he worked as an intelligence analyst near Baghdad during the Iraq war. The government alleges Manning handed the information to WikiLeaks which sparked tremendous controversy when it began publishing it in late summer 2010.
A military judge denied a request Wednesday to dismiss all the charges against the Army intelligence analyst accused of leaking hundreds of thousands of classified military and State Department documents while serving in Iraq.
The charges against Pfc. Bradley Manning include aiding the enemy, wrongfully causing intelligence to be published on the Internet, transmitting national defense information and theft of public property or records.
His trial date is set for September 21. He could go to prison for life if convicted.
In asking the court to dismiss all charges, Manning's lawyer alleged "widespread discovery violations" by military prosecutors, but the judge, Col. Denise Lind, rejected the dismissal motion.
Manning's lead lawyer, David Coombs, argued this week that because prosecutors did not understand the discovery rules, he and his fellow attorneys have not been given information that could help in Manning's defense.
By Josh Levs and Larry Shaughnessy
Pfc. Bradley Manning returns to court Tuesday to push for all charges against him to be dropped.
Manning is the Army intelligence analyst suspected of leaking hundreds of thousands of classified military and state department documents while serving in Iraq. Many of those documents ended up on the WikiLeaks website.
His attorneys filed two motions last week. One pushes for all charges against Manning to be dismissed. If that fails, the second pushes for some charges to be dropped.
The latter filing argues that the defense should be allowed to review "grand jury materials" that are in the possession of military authorities.
By Jennifer Rizzo
Pfc. Bradley Manning, the U.S. Army soldier accused in the biggest leak of intelligence documents in the military's history, was formally charged Thursday.
Aiding the enemy is a capital offense, but prosecutors are not seeking the death penalty. If convicted on all the charges, Manning will likely face life in prison. The 24-year-old is suspected of giving hundreds of thousands of secret documents to the WikiLeaks website. FULL POST
By Carol Cratty
A U.S. Army soldier accused of leaking hundreds of thousands of secret government documents to WikiLeaks came one step closer to a court-martial on Thursday. An investigating officer assigned to Pfc. Bradley Manning's case recommended he face a just such a military court for trial, the Army announced.
After an Article 32 hearing for Manning - which is the military's rough equivalent of a grand jury proceeding - the investigating officer concluded "reasonable grounds exist to believe that the accused committed the offenses alleged." The recommendation now goes Col. Carl Coffman, the "special court-martial convening authority." If he approves, the recommendation would then go to the commander of the military district of Washington for a final decision on Manning's case.
Manning, 24, is accused of committing the biggest intelligence leak in U.S. history. The charges against him include aiding the enemy, wrongfully causing intelligence to be published on the Internet, transmitting national defense information, and theft of public property or records.