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Wednesday, January 29, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Trump intervenes in military justice cases, grants pardons

UPDATED: Fri., Nov. 15, 2019

In this Tuesday, July 2, 2019, file photo, Navy Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher leaves a military court on Naval Base San Diego. On Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019 the chief of naval operations denied a request for clemency and upheld a military jury's sentence that will reduce the rank of a Gallagher, a decorated Navy SEAL convicted of posing with a dead Islamic State captive in Iraq in 2017. Adm. Mike Gilday made the decision after carefully review of the trial and the arguments made by Navy SEAL Edward Gallagher's lawyers. (Gregory Bull / AP)
In this Tuesday, July 2, 2019, file photo, Navy Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher leaves a military court on Naval Base San Diego. On Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019 the chief of naval operations denied a request for clemency and upheld a military jury's sentence that will reduce the rank of a Gallagher, a decorated Navy SEAL convicted of posing with a dead Islamic State captive in Iraq in 2017. Adm. Mike Gilday made the decision after carefully review of the trial and the arguments made by Navy SEAL Edward Gallagher's lawyers. (Gregory Bull / AP)
Associated Press

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump has issued a full pardon for a former U.S. Army Green Beret being charged with murder, undermining military justice proceedings.

A court-martial for Maj. Mathew Golsteyn had been scheduled for December at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, but was postponed until February.

The former Green Beret is accused of killing a suspected bomb-maker while deployed in Afghanistan. Golsteyn has argued that the Afghan was a legal target because of his behavior at the time of the shooting.

The case attracted Trump’s attention. He tweeted that Golsteyn is a “U.S. Military hero” who could face the death penalty “from our own government.”

Trump also issued a full pardon late Friday for former Army 1st Lt. Clint Lorance — who is serving a 19-year sentence stemming from a second-degree murder conviction in 2013 — and ordered a promotion for Special Warfare Operator 1st Class Edward R. Gallagher, who was demoted from Chief after a court martial found him guilty of posing with the corpse of an enemy combatant.

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