Bowe Bergdahl Will Not Be Imprisoned

BREAKING Judge Lets Bergdahl Walk Free

Bergdahl will not be jailed after endangering fellow troops when he deserted his post in Afghanistan in 2009.

President Barack Obama was criticized for trading Taliban prisoners to bring him back.

Prosecutors had asked Nance to send Bergdahl to prison for 14 years for the hardships and injuries endured by service members who searched for the soldier after he left his combat outpost in Paktika province in June 2009 without permission.

The judge had wide leeway because Bergdahl made no deal with prosecutors to limit his sentence.

U.S. soldier Bowe Bergdahl has been spared jail for deserting his post in Afghanistan eight years ago, but his story isn't over just yet.

Instead, he was sentenced to be dishonorably discharged, reduced in rank, and forced to pay $1,000 every month from his salary for ten months, reports CNN. After returning to the United States, he pleaded guilty to desertion and misbehavior before the enemy.

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Criticism by President Donald Trump also appeared to push the judge toward leniency. "We're exhausted of Sgt. Bergdahl, who's a traitor, a no-good traitor, who should have been executed", Trump said during an October 2015 campaign rally.

Military judge Jeffery Nance rejected the request, maintaining he had not been influenced by the comments of the man who became commander in chief but that he would consider Trump's statements "as mitigation evidence" (paywall) in sentencing. "As everyone knows he was a captive of the Taliban for almost five years, and three more years have elapsed while the legal process unfolded".

Bergdahl had eventually been diagnosed with schizotypal personality disorder, which was a key argument of the defense, which cited the condition's symptoms of grandiose and impaired thinking as a reason for his desertion.

Trump, speaking at the White House Rose Garden on October 16, declined to weigh in on the case, "but I think people have heard my comments in the past", he said.

Gen. Robert B. Abrahms, who convened the court-martial, will review the sentence, according to the Times.

Bergdahl's case made him a polarizing figure. But the defense argued that Bergdahl had suffered enough.

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