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ACLU Lobbies Obama to Commute Sentence of Chelsea Manning

LEAVENWORTH, Kan. — The American Civil Liberties Union and gay-rights groups are lobbying President Barack Obama to commute the prison sentence of a transgender soldier who leaked classified government and military documents.

Imprisoned U.S. soldier Chelsea Manning
Imprisoned U.S. soldier Chelsea Manning US Army - AFP - Getty Images

The ACLU said the letter Monday co-signed by more than a dozen civil rights groups considers Chelsea Manning's 35-year sentence unprecedented.

Attorneys on behalf of Manning, imprisoned at Kansas' Fort Leavenworth, made a similar pitch last month for commutation.

Manning was arrested in 2010 and convicted in 2013 in military court of charges related to her leaking of more than 700,000 secret military and State Department documents to WikiLeaks. At that time she was known as Bradley Manning.

She later filed a transgender prisoner rights lawsuit and has tried to commit suicide at least twice, citing her behind-bars treatment.

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