Judge says Trump comments do not taint Bergdahl desertion case
The military judge hearing U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl’s desertion case said on Monday he will not dismiss the charges due to comments by President Donald Trump that the defense argued unfairly influenced the proceedings.
During presidential campaign last year, Republican Trump called Bergdahl “a no-good traitor who should have been executed.” The defense said Trump did not renounce such statements in recent remarks about the case.
Army Colonel Jeffery Nance ruled in court at North Carolina’s Fort Bragg that no reasonable person would harbor doubt about the integrity of the proceedings due to Trump’s comments but said he would consider them as mitigating factors for Bergdahl’s sentence.
(Reporting by Greg Lacour; Writing by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Mary Milliken and Jeffrey Benkoe)