A federal judge on Friday found Chelsea
Manning in contempt of court for refusing to answer questions before
a grand jury.
The 31-year-old Manning was taken into
custody after she refused to answer the grand jury's questions
related to WikiLeaks, ABC
News reported. U.S. District Judge Claude Hilton ordered Manning
to be held in jail until she decides to cooperate or until the grand
jury concludes its work.
Manning's lawyer said that she could be
in jail for up to 18 months.
“A judge will consider the legal
grounds for my refusal to answer questions in front of a grand jury,”
Manning said in a statement released before her appearance. “The
court may find me in contempt, and order me to jail.”
The former Army private came out
transgender on the day she was sentenced to serve 35 years in prison
for disclosing classified materials to WikiLeaks. Before leaving the
White House, President Barack Obama commuted all but four months of
Manning's remaining prison term. She served nearly 7 years of her
Last year, Manning campaigned as a
Democrat to replace incumbent Maryland Senator Ben Cardin, who won
reelection to a third term, taking 65 percent of the vote.