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Chelsea Manning RELEASED from jail after suicide attempt, still must pay $256k fine – judge

Whistleblower Chelsea Manning, jailed for refusing to testify against WikiLeaks before a grand jury, has been released – but is still on the hook for over a quarter of a million dollars in fines for contempt of court.

US District Judge Anthony Trenga’s order comes just a day after Manning attempted suicide inside the Alexandria Detention Center in Virginia, reportedly by using a bedsheet to hang herself.

The grand jury that Manning was summoned to testify before had concluded its work and was discharged on March 12, Trenga wrote in the order, therefore her appearance is no longer needed and “her detention no longer serves any coercive purpose.”

However, Trenga declared that the $1,000-a-day fine he imposed on Manning last year, in addition to her imprisonment, was not punitive “but rather necessary to the coercive purpose of the court’s civil contempt order” and will therefore be payable immediately – all $256,000 of it.

It is unclear whether Manning will be jailed again if she fails to pay the fine, given that the year-long imprisonment has deprived her of income as well. 

Manning was the US Army intelligence analyst who provided WikiLeaks with the Iraq and Afghanistan war logs in 2010, along with a trove of State Department documents – for which she was convicted under the Espionage Act. She spent seven years in federal prison until President Barack Obama commuted her 35-year sentence at the end of his term in office.

When Trenga convened the grand jury to investigate WikiLeaks in February 2019, Manning was summoned to testify – but refused.

“I would rather starve to death than to change my opinion in this regard. And when I say that, I mean that quite literally,” she told reporters in May 2019. 

The month before, WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange was arrested in the UK and is awaiting possible extradition to the US on charges related to the 2010 revelations, which could see him imprisoned for 175 years if convicted.

https://www.rt.com/usa/482983-manning-release-suicide-attempt-jail/

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Olivia Kroth
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I feel sorry for this human being. Got caught and stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Clarity
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Clarity

Just 20 hours into a gofundme campaign to cover the fine and it is inching in on $100k already. At this rate the amount to cover the fine will be met before Monday.

Here is the link to help
https://www.gofundme.com/f/help-chelsea-pay-her-court-fines

Paul Martin
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Paul Martin

I see from the linked page that the amount has been met, and they have closed any further donations. This should be good news indeed. But there is a dark side to this, potentially. Manning is now indebted to all the people who contributed to this fund. It will mean that not only will she express her profound gratitude to all who helped in this matter, but she will also potentially not be able to say certain things, or to adopt certain positions, that question what is accepted as “true” by her supporters. How clear is that to everyone?

Clarity
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Clarity

Less than two days and the fine has now been covered in FULL by people generously donating to Chelsea’s GoFundMe campaign.

The campaign is still going… Chelsea will need some time to recover, so there is still an opportunity to donate.
https://www.gofundme.com/f/help-chelsea-pay-her-court-fines

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