By David Dishneau
The Associated Press
FORT MEADE, Md. — Pfc. Bradley Manning will learn this afternoon whether he will be convicted of aiding the enemy — punishable by life in prison without parole — for sending more than 700,000 government documents to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks, a military judge said Monday.
Col. Denise Lind said on the third day of deliberations that she will announce her verdict at 1 p.m today in Manning’s court-martial.
The charge of aiding the enemy is the most serious of 21 counts Manning is contesting. He also is charged with eight federal Espionage Act violations, five federal theft counts and two federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act violations, each punishable by up to 10 years; and five military counts of violating a lawful general regulation, punishable by up to two years each.
Lind has tentatively scheduled a sentencing hearing beginning Wednesday. The sentencing phase could run for several weeks; each side has more than 20 potential witnesses.
Manning is being tried by a judge alone, which was his choice.
The 25-year-old native of Crescent, Okla., has admitted to sending more than 470,000 Iraq and Afghanistan battlefield reports, 250,000 State Department diplomatic cables and other material including several battlefield video clips to WikiLeaks while working as an intelligence analyst in Iraq in early 2010.
The video included footage of a 2007 U.S. Apache helicopter attack in Baghdad that killed at least nine men, including a Reuters news photographer and his driver.