Monday, December 14, 2015

Bowe Bergdahl to Face Court-Martial on Desertion Charges

A top Army commander on Monday ordered that Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl face a court-martial on charges of desertion and endangering troops stemming from his decision to leave his outpost in 2009, prompting a huge manhunt in the wilds of eastern Afghanistan and landing him in nearly five years of harsh Taliban captivity.

The decision by Gen. Robert B. Abrams, head of Army Forces Command at Fort Bragg, N.C., means that Sergeant Bergdahl, 29, faces a possible life sentence, a far more serious penalty than had been recommended by the Army’s own investigating officer, Lt. Gen. Kenneth Dahl, who testified at the sergeant’s preliminary hearing in September that a jail sentence would be “inappropriate.”

According to Sergeant Bergdahl’s defense lawyers, the Army lawyer who presided over the preliminary hearing also recommended that he face neither jail time nor a punitive discharge and that he go before an intermediate tribunal known as a “special court-martial” where the most severe penalty possible would be a year of confinement.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/15/us/bowe-bergdahl-to-face-court-martial-on-desertion-charges.html



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