BREAKING: Breanna Manning lawyers win small victory against prosecution!
June 25, 2012
A US military judge ordered prosecutors Monday to share more documents with WikiLeaks suspect Breanna Manning after defense lawyers accused them of hiding information that could help their client’s case.
For months, Manning’s defense team has demanded access to reports by government agencies, including the CIA, that assessed the effect of the leak of classified documents to the WikiLeaks website.
Manning is accused of passing on a massive trove of files to WikiLeaks but her lawyers believe the reports will show the alleged disclosures had no major effect on the country’s national security.
Judge Denise Lind ruled that government prosecutors must provide “damage assessment” reports from the CIA, the State Department, the FBI, the Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive (Oncix) and other documents that were relevant for the defense.
The judge, agreeing with a request from Manning’s lawyers, also ordered the prosecution to give a detailed account showing it had met legal obligations to share all pertinent evidence with the defense.
In a statement of “due diligence,” the prosecutors would have to show what documents they had obtained and why any files were not shared with the defense.
The judge imposed a deadline of July 25 on the prosecutors but indicated she would be willing to give the prosecution more time to produce the statement. Defense lawyers would also have a chance to request more time to review any new evidence that was passed on.
Manning’s civilian lawyer, David Coombs, had argued earlier Monday that government prosecutors had displayed a “pattern” of obstruction on document requests that “should cause alarm to the court.”
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