In a recent pre-trial hearing, accused deserter Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl's military lawyer said the Army is "casting a semblance of doubt" on his client by not awarding Bergdahl several medals, including the Purple Heart and the Prisoner of War medal.
The military lawyer for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl says before his client was captured by the Taliban, he was entitled to the awards and the Army's failure to grant them could bias potential jurors in the trial.
In addition to the Purple Heart and POW Medal, Rosenblatt told Army judge Col. Jeffrey R. Nance, Bergdahl should be awarded the Afghanistan Campaign Medal and the NATO medal during the hearing that largely focused on the defense's ability to access classified material related to Bergdahl's case.
As you may remember, Bergdahl faces a general court-martial on charges of "misbehavior before the enemy by endangering the safety of a command, unit or place" and "desertion with intent to shirk important or hazardous duty."
Those charges carry a sentence of up to life in prison for the misbehavior charge and as much as five years for the desertion charge. Bergdahl's court-martial is scheduled for Aug. 8-19 at Fort Bragg.
Bergdahl, 29, remains on active duty at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston assigned to U.S. Army North. He spent five years imprisoned by a Taliban-linked group before he was released in May 2014 in a controversial prisoner swap for five Taliban commanders who had been held in a detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
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