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Bergdahl ran away in Afghanistan in 2009 and was imprisoned by the Taliban. After that he was subjected to torture for many years. The military came free after a prison swap and risked a lifelong cell punishment in his home country. He had admitted that he was deserted.
Prosecutors had earmarked for Bergtahl fourteen years ago. They blamed him to put his colleagues at risk. They were exposed to great risks during the search for the missing sergeant. Bergdahl acknowledged this week a 'horrible mistake' and apologized.
Bergdahl lawyers described him as a hardworking young man who did not overlook the consequences of his actions. The sergeant himself claimed that he would deny misconceptions within his unity. Therefore he would have run away. Experts stated that the military is struggling with psychological problems.
The case got a lot of attention in the United States. For example, Donald Trump, then Presidential candidate, called Bergdahl a 'worthless traitor who should have been executed'. The court later stated that Trump's verdict did not prevent a fair trial.