Taliban fighter's parents ask Bush to set son free

Thursday, December 18, 2008

SAN FRANCISCO -- The parents of American-born Taliban fighter John Walker Lindh are asking President Bush to set their son free before Bush leaves office next month.

Lindh was sentenced to 20 years in prison after pleading guilty in 2002 to serving in the Taliban army, which violated U.S. economic sanctions against Afghanistan at that time.

At a news conference Wednesday in San Francisco, Lindh's mother, Marilyn Walker, asked the president to show mercy during the Christmas season by commuting her son's sentence.

Lindh initially asked for a commutation in 2004, and his lawyers have renewed the request each year.

The U.S. Department of Justice has never acted on the petition, and a spokeswoman didn't immediately return a telephone call.

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