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Bergdahl Lawyer Files for Dismissal, Says Trump Mockery Makes Fair Trial Impossible

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Bowe Bergdahl prior to his capture in 2009. He was promoted twice in absentia: from private first-class to sergeant. - U.S. ARMY
  • U.S. Army
  • Bowe Bergdahl prior to his capture in 2009. He was promoted twice in absentia: from private first-class to sergeant.
Eugene Fidell, chief counsel for U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl asked a military court on Friday to dismiss desertion and endangerment charges against Bergdahl, saying it is impossible for the Idaho native to get a fair trial now that President Donald Trump has officially taken office.

Bergdahl disappeared in June 2009 from his post in eastern Afghanistan. He was captured by the Taliban and held prisoner until May 2014, when he was freed in an exchange for five Taliban leaders being held at Guantanamo Bay. Bergdahl was court-martialed after an investigation into the circumstances of his capture.

Throughout his campaign, President Trump called Bergdahl a "dirty rotten traitor" and pantomimed a firing squad executing Bergdahl. In his motion to dismiss, Fidell told a military court, "Ordering [a jury] to disregard news accounts would be like shutting the barn door after the horse has bolted." He said the Army's own investigation did not suggest Bergdahl was a traitor and the military has not accused Bergdahl of treason.

The court martial is scheduled to begin in April.


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