Correction: Manning-WikiLeaks story
FORT MEADE, Md. (AP) — FORT MEADE, Md. (AP) — In a story June 25 about Army leaker Pfc. Bradley Manning, The Associated Press reported erroneously that attorneys for Manning did not object to the judge temporarily closing his court-martial to the public and press to protect classified information in written witness statements to be read aloud in court. On Tuesday, defense attorneys did not object having the judge read those portions of the statements to herself, negating the need for courtroom closures.
A corrected version of the story is below:
Manning defense OK with plan to avoid court closure
Manning defense raises no objection to judge silently reading witness statements to avoid court closure
FORT MEADE, Maryland (AP) — Lawyers for the U.S. soldier accused of aiding the enemy by leaking thousands of classified documents raised no objection Tuesday to a government proposal to have the military judge in the case silently read written witness statements to protect their confidentiality.
As Bradley Manning’s trial entered its fourth week, defense attorney David Coombs told the military judge he had no objection to closing the courtroom while prosecutors read aloud the classified sections of written witness statements.
Prosecutors have said they expect to present as many as 17 such statements this week. The statements may include evidence about more than 250,000 State Department diplomatic cables Manning is accused of stealing from a classified computer database.
Manning denies the theft charge but has acknowledged he sent the cables, along with hundreds of thousands of classified war logs and some Iraq and Afghanistan battlefield videos, to the anti-secrecy organization WikiLeaks. The former intelligence analyst has said he leaked the material to expose wrongdoing by U.S. service members and diplomats.
The trial is to determine whether Manning is guilty of espionage, theft, computer fraud and aiding the enemy, which carries a possible life sentence.
Associated Press writer David Dishneau contributed.