Published: Sat, May 18, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Chelsea Manning ordered to jail again after refusing subpoena

Chelsea Manning ordered to jail again after refusing subpoena

Manning, who spent seven years in military prisons for leaking USA secrets to WikiLeaks in 2010 and then two more months in an Alexandria, Virginia, jail this year on contempt charges, had said before the hearing that she would again refuse to testify.

Chelsea Manning was again behind bars on Thursday night after she was jailed for a second time for contempt of court, having refused to cooperate with a grand jury.

This time, a judge ordered Manning to the Alexandria Detention Center, where she can face up to 18 months in prison, the length of the grand jury term, unless she agrees to cooperate with the investigation sooner.

During a court hearing on Thursday, Manning told Judge Anthony Trenga that she has no intention of giving in to government pressure.

"I would rather starve to death than change my opinions in that regard", Manning told Trenga, reiterating her opposition to the secretive grand jury process.

If she continued to refuse to testify after 60 days the fine would go up to $US1,000 a day, a law enforcement official and a spokesman for her attorneys said.

At a short press conference prior to a Thursday hearing, Manning said she was prepared to return to jail "indefinitely" rather than testify.

The journalist is now being held in the maximum security Belmarsh Prison, known as Britain's Guantanamo, after being sentenced to 50 weeks in prison on a bail-jumping charge related to long-discredited rape allegations in Sweden.

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She was released from jail last week after serving a two-month sentence for an earlier refusal to testify.

Ms. Manning's lawyers had argued that she should not be jailed because she has proven that she will refuse to testify no matter how long she's jailed.

Manning was subpoenaed to testify before a grand jury hearing evidence collected by prosecutors who have for years been investigating WikiLeaks, and who recently unsealed a criminal indictment against its founder, Julian Assange. Manning was given just one week of freedom to spend with her friends and family before being cruelly thrown back into federal detention.

Manning previously served seven years in military prison for WikiLeaks crimes before most of the 35-year sentence was commuted in the final days of the Obama administration. They didn't like the outcome.

"Ultimately the goal here is to re-litigate the court martial, from my perspective".

Former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning has been sent to jail - again - for refusing to testify to a grand jury. "It is telling that the United States has always been more concerned with the disclosure of those [leaked] documents than with their damning substance", she told reporters.

"In 2010, Chelsea took a principled decision to let the world see the true nature of modern asymmetric warfare", Moira Meltzer-Cohen, an attorney for Manning, said Thursday.

The same is the case for Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib, both members of the Democratic Socialists of America, neither of whom, as of this writing, had made a statement on their social media accounts about Manning's latest incarceration.

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