Navy SEAL accused of war crimes allowed out of brig after Trump tweet

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SAN DIEGO — A Navy SEAL accused of war crimes has been moved out of the brig at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, his attorney confirms.

Navy SEAL Chief Edward Gallagher can now move around parts of the base but cannot leave the air station, where he had previously been awaiting his trial in the brig. The move comes after a Saturday morning tweet from President Donald Trump saying Gallagher would soon be granted “less restrictive confinement.”

The SEAL chief was first arrested last fall. He has been charged with various violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice while deployed to Mosul, Iraq, in 2017. He has been accused of stabbing and murdering a wounded person, shooting at noncombatants and posing for a photo and performing his re-enlistment ceremony next to a dead body.

Gallagher’s wife and brother recently spoke to FOX 5 and said all allegations are false.

Trump said the new freedoms were “in honor of his past service to our country.”

Several dozen members of Congress, led by South Carolina Republican Rep. Ralph Norman, have been pushing to move Gallagher as he awaits trial in May.

Norman said Friday on Twitter he had spoken with Trump about moving Gallagher and that it was “appropriate that he be treated as a decorated soldier who still has the presumption of innocence.” Austin Livingston, a spokesman for Norman, said he did not have any details about the timing of Gallagher’s relocation and said the congressman was not taking a position on Gallagher’s guilt or innocence.

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