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Retired General Gets $10,000 Fine, Avoids Jail on Sex Charges

March 18, 1999|Associated Press

FT. LEWIS, Wash. — A retired Army general was reprimanded Wednesday and fined $10,000 after pleading guilty to conduct unbecoming an officer for having affairs with four subordinates' wives.

Maj. Gen. David Hale, 53, smiled and hugged his attorney after the sentencing.

Hale is the highest-ranking Army officer to be court-martialed since 1952. Prosecutors had asked for a $125,000 fine to cover the cost of an investigation into one of Hale's liaisons, a $1,466-a-month deduction from Hale's $6,312-a-month pension, and confinement.

Instead, the judge, Col. Stephen Saynisch, reprimanded Hale, fined him $10,000 and ordered him to forfeit $1,000 a month for a year.

"I cannot express adequately how sorry I am, how embarrassed I am, for the pain I have brought the U.S. Army, my fellow soldiers and my family and friends," Hale said.

He was allowed to retire with honor last year despite claims of improprieties while he was a top NATO commander.

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