At her court-martial six years ago, Chelsea Manning issued a detailed statement on her motives, explaining how she dared shoulder personal responsibility for the leaks related to the deployment of US troops in Iraq, etc.
Now prosecutors seem to be taking issue with the statement, claiming that new facts have emerged pointing to some inconsistencies in it. Manning’s lawyer has, meanwhile, linked the said new data with someone apparently spying on her client, who was released from prison in 2017 on a clemency grant from President Obama, and now, nearly two years later, was given a new subpoena.
“The concern here is that the subpoena as a whole is the product of unlawful—and possibly misunderstood—electronic surveillance”, attorney Moira Meltzer-Cohen wrote in a motion, attempting to block the subpoena that was unsealed on Wednesday.
“Since her release, Ms. Manning has experienced all manner of intrusive surveillance, including surveillance vans parked outside her apartment, federal agents following her, and strangers attempting to goad her into an absurdly contrived conversation about selling dual-use technologies to foreign actors”, wrote Meltzer-Cohen.
Manning herself echoed the comments, saying that the subpoena violated her First Amendment free-speech rights, abused the grand jury process, and relied on illegal surveillance. Meanwhile, the Justice Department and the Army both issued formal grants of immunity to her for any testimony she gave to the WikiLeaks grand jury.
The former WikiLeaks whistle-blower also touched upon a hidden camera stunt, which she allegedly happened to be a target of.
US District Judge Claude Hilton rejected Manning’s arguments this month and ordered her to testify, which she instantly refused to do, and was later taken into custody, where she can be held until the grand jury panel is dissolved.