News » Citydesk

Bergdahl Hearing Slated for Sept. 17


U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl
  • U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl
Military officials announced Thursday that the much-anticipated Article 32 hearing for U.S. Army Sergeant and Idaho native Bowe Bergdahl is now scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 17, at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Same Houston, Texas. Army officials had previously indicated that the hearing would be held this July, but said Thursday that the proceedings had been pushed back at the request of Bergdahl's defense team.

Bergdahl disappeared in June, 2009, from a combat post in Paktika Province in eastern Afghanistan and was captured by the Taliban. He spent five years as a prisoner of war before he was freed in May 2014 in a prisoner swap that angered members of congress and some members of his unit. Bergdahl was released in exchange for five Taliban leaders held at Guantanamo Bay. They were sent to Qatar and had to remain there for a year.

After an investigation of the circumstances of his capture, Bergdahl was charged this past March with desertion and misbehavior before the enemy, counts that could lead to life in prison.

"There's still a lot of material that we haven't seen, and we have a pending request for a variety of pieces of evidence and investigative assistance," Eugene Fidell, one of Bergdahl's attorneys, told the Washington Post.

Since his release, Bergdahl has been assigned to administrative duties at Fort Sam Houston.

The desertion charge carries a maximum punishment of five years behind bars. The additional charge of misbehavior before the enemy includes a maximum punishment of confinement for life and dishonorable discharge.