Han formerly being a part of the Imperial military has long been part of the extended universe of Star Wars. With the release of Solo: A Star Wars Story, it was established in Disney canon that Solo deserted from the Imperial Army while he was assigned to Minban. In that film, it is even mentioned that hunting down a single deserter is not a priority for the Empire, but that doesn't mean that they never do it or would not take action if they happened to cross paths with a deserter.

In Disney canon, does Han ever face any particular repercussions after his escape from Minban from his status as a deserter? He is captured by the Empire at least twice later in his life (on Bespin and the moon of Endor), but I don't recall any particular mention of any specific punishment for desertion or even any hint that the Imperial forces there even recognize that he is a deserter or consider him anything other than "Rebel Scum" and (on Bespin) someone with a bounty on him by Jabba the Hutt.

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    Presumably by the time of his two captures in the OT the fact he was a deserter didn't really matter much as the other things took precedence. And note he was boarded and searched before ANH as a smuggler so if anything would have happened it would have happened before the OT.
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Dec 2, 2019 at 16:36
  • @TheLethalCarrot that's right, that's why I'm asking this question. It seems that the Empire basically doesn't care, and may not even recognize that the Solo that they encounter was once one of them (and not some random nobody who never wore an Imperial uniform). The question is if they ever made the connection in some way and used that information in some, perhaps minor, way. Dec 2, 2019 at 16:38
  • He faces the repercussions in Solo: A Star Wars Story itself, or the initial ones at least when Beckett has him thrown in with Chewie.
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Dec 2, 2019 at 16:47
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    Sure, just thought it was worth pointing out that he was captured initially for being a deserter so maybe the later "desertion" didn't count as actual desertion.
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Dec 2, 2019 at 16:52
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    Point of interest: in Empire Strikes Back, Vader isn't interested in turning Han over to the usual Imperial authorities for desertion or rebellion - once he used Han to get Luke, he was fine kicking him over to Fett. Unless he figured dealing with Jabba was a worse fate than an Imperial prison...
    – Cadence
    Dec 2, 2019 at 16:58

1 Answer 1


It's not especially clear if the Empire were even aware of his continued existence. He was in the Imperial army under an assumed name and the last time they saw him, he was being thrown into a pit on Mimban to be executed. The pit itself collapsed and several soldiers were buried under tons of metal plates and mud.

It's certainly possible that his absence wasn't noted and that he was never marked down as an escapee/deserter, which would explain why Vader was happy to hand Solo over to Fett rather than delivering him up to Imperial justice.

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