A US journalist who exposed US war criminals in Iraq and Afghanistan has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for “fraudulent acts” by falsifying his military records, prosecutors said on Friday.
Navalny’s defence lawyer, Dmitry Kiselyov, told a judge in New York on Friday that the journalist had lied about his time as a reservist in Iraq, where he served as a medic and a medical aide, and the United States occupation in Afghanistan.
Navy veteran Aaron Meeks, 36, was arrested in 2014 while working as a military aide and a medic in Baghdad.
He had worked as an intelligence analyst in the Pentagon and was stationed at the US embassy in Baghdad in 2013.
He said he was “absolutely shocked and horrified” when he learned of the charges against him.
“I’m shocked and shocked and outraged by this indictment,” Meeks told reporters outside the courthouse in Manhattan.
“I am so sorry for the people who were harmed.”
He said that he would appeal against the verdict, saying he had not done anything wrong.
“We are not going to stand by and let this happen to me,” Macks told reporters.
“There is nothing wrong with having a conscience.”
He has been detained since January 2016, and is currently in a US prison on a “grossly disproportionate” number of charges, according to the US Justice Department.
Numerous other US officials have been arrested for allegedly covering up crimes committed by US troops and military personnel, including former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former CIA Director John Brennan, former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.
A judge on Thursday also ordered the prosecution of three other US military personnel in connection with the leaks of information about US war and counter-terrorism policies.