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Chelsea Manning Leaves Prison, Immediately Gets Documentary Movie Deal

19 May 2017, 09:45 | Taylor George

Chelsea Manning Leaves Prison, Immediately Gets Documentary Movie Deal

Chelsea Manning Leaves Prison, Immediately Gets Documentary Movie Deal

Chelsea Manning, the transgender army private jailed for one of the largest leaks of classified documents in United States history, was released from a military prison Wednesday after seven years behind bars.

Military prosecutors in 2010 charged Manning with 22 offenses, including violations of the Espionage Act, for giving hundreds of thousands of classified USA documents and diplomatic cables to WikiLeaks.

Manning was convicted of providing more than 700,000 documents, videos, diplomatic cables and battlefield accounts to WikiLeaks, an worldwide organisation that publishes such information from anonymous sources.

Manning said in a statement Wednesday that "whatever is ahead ... is far more important than the past", and that she's "figuring things out right now".

"For the first time, I can see a future for myself as Chelsea", Manning told the BBC last week, looking forward to her release. In commuting to time served her 35-year sentence-the longest ever penalty dished out in the U.S.to an official leaker.

The documents she leaked included more than 250,000 diplomatic cables, in addition to hundreds of thousands of other confidential documents.

The AP said the leaks laid bare sensitive secrets and endangered information sources. "She wouldn't be charged again for the same offenses, but if she committed a new crime, the military would still have jurisdiction over her".

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Manning, formerly known as Private First Class Bradley Manning, began her transition to becoming a woman after entering prison.

Manning said during her 2013 trial that she was disturbed by the "bloodlust" by some in the military, which she said was "similar to a child torturing ants with a magnifying glass".

There have been protests held to have Manning released from prison, and on the most part her posts on social media were warmly received. During her sentence, Manning attempted suicide twice.

A US Army spokesperson confirmed that she left Fort Leavenworth military prison in Kansas in the early morning.

The decision angered national security experts who say Manning put USA lives at risk, but it won praise from transgender advocates who have embraced her transition to a female gender identity. "She has repeatedly been punished for trying to survive and now is being repeatedly punished for trying to die", Chase Strangio, her attorney, wrote in an email to the Associated Press. Under this status, she is eligible for care at military medical facilities and other benefits, but will not receive pay. "After so many years of government control over her body and gender, I know she [Manning] is eager to grow her hair, express her gender and negotiate decisions on her own terms", said Stranglio.

Manning will remain in the military for now, unpaid.



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