Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl will plead guilty to charges of desertion and misbehavior before the enemy later this month; avoiding a prolonged trial over allegations he voluntarily abandoned his post while fighting against the Taliban in Afghanistan back in 2009.
According to Fox News, Bergdahl plans to submit his guilty plea in the coming weeks, with sentencing expected to start on October 23rd. The veteran faces five years imprisonment for desertion and a possible life sentence for his misbehavior charge.
The 31-year-old Sergeant was the center of a media firestorm in 2014, when former President Barack Obama negotiated his release after being held captive by Taliban forces for nearly five years.
The Obama administration exchanged Bergdahl for five high-profile Taliban prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay, and came under fierce criticism over the conditions of Bergdahl’s capture and suspicions he voluntarily abandoned his post.
President Trump harshly critiqued his predecessor’s negotiations with the terror group, and routinely called Bergdahl a “traitor” throughout his presidential campaign.
“We’re tired of Sgt. Bergdahl, who’s a traitor, a no-good traitor,” said then candidate-Trump.
Earlier this year, the Army Sgt.’s legal team suggested President Trump’s harsh rhetoric made a fair trial “near impossible.”
“President Trump has made it impossible for SGT Bergdahl to obtain a fair trial,” Bergdahl’s lawyers wrote. “President Trump transformed his rallies into a televised traveling lynch mob. Justice cannot be done and public confidence in military justice cannot be maintained under these circumstances.”