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The Nation

The desertion court-martial of an Army private who defected to the Soviet Union and later changed his mind and returned will begin Feb. 10, the Army announced. The trial date was decided during a conference between a military judge, the prosecution and defense lawyers for Pvt. Wade E. Roberts, Ft. Dix, N.J., spokesman Richard Dowling said. Roberts will have a choice of having his case heard solely by the judge or by a panel of at least five soldiers, Dowling said. Roberts, 22, of San Bernardino, Calif., is charged with desertion for leaving his base in West Germany without permission in March and fleeing to the Soviet Union with his German girlfriend. He returned Nov. 4.


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