Former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning faces possible jail time after refusing to answer a grand jury’s questions about her disclosure of classified State Department cables and war logs in 2010 to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks.
Manning said that a federal judge in Alexandria, Va., scheduled a contempt hearing for Friday and that she could be sent to jail, less than two years after she was released from a military prison for the leaks.
“Yesterday, I appeared before a secret grand jury after being given immunity for my testimony,” Manning said in a statement Thursday. “All of the substantive questions pertained to my disclosures of information to the public in 2010 — answers I provided in extensive testimony, during my court-martial in 2013. I responded to each question with the following statement: ‘I object to the question and refuse to answer on the grounds that the question is in violation of my First, Fourth, and Sixth Amendment, and other statutory rights.’ ”
The same judge, Claude M. Hilton, refused to quash the subpoena against Manning in a sealed hearing Tuesday.
“I will exhaust every legal remedy available,” Manning said in her statement. “My legal team continues to challenge the secrecy of these proceedings, and I am prepared to face the consequences of my refusal.”
Manning is one of several people who have been called in recent months to aid the investigation into WikiLeaks and its founder, Julian Assange, who has been charged under seal.
David House, who befriended Manning in 2010 at a hacker space House founded in Boston, testified under immunity in front of the grand jury in July. He said he, too, was asked about the war logs Manning shared with WikiLeaks.
During her trial, Manning testified that she acted on her own to send documents to WikiLeaks and that no one associated with the anti-secrecy group pressured her into providing more information.
Prosecutors produced chat logs in which Manning asked Assange for help cracking a password to argue that the two were collaborating.
Manning, 31, formerly known as Bradley Manning, was sentenced to 35 years in prison for exposing the largest cache of classified documents in U.S. history. However, her sentence was commuted after seven years by President Barack Obama. A spokesman for President Trump, who was about to take office, called that decision “disappointing” and “troubling.”
Assange remains in asylum in Ecuador’s London embassy, where he has lived for the past seven years to avoid extradition.