Wikileak's founder Julian Assange loses extradition appeal in sexual assault case.

Julian Assange 
Julian Assange, founder of the anti- secrecy website WikiLeaks, lost a U.K. Supreme Court appeal to block his extradition to Sweden to face rape claims after challenging a technicality of his detainment 18 months ago.

The Swedish prosecutor that investigated the sexual assault allegations issued a European arrest warrant for Assange in 2010, is a “judicial authority” under European Union law, Britain’s top court ruled today. Assange’s lawyers argued only a judge could issue such a warrant.

“The words ‘judicial authority’ bear the meaning that includes a public prosecutor,” the Supreme Court ruled in a 5-2 decision.

The claims by two women that Assange sexually assaulted them became public around the same time he posted classified U.S. military and diplomatic cables on the WikiLeaks website, creating controversy for U.S. President Barack Obama’s administration. The 40-year-old Australian claimed the arrest warrant was fabricated by Sweden to assist the U.S. in punishing him for the breach.

Assange’s lawyer Dinah Rose told the court she may seek to challenge the decision and the extradition will be stayed for 14 days. He could also apply to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France, which would have two weeks to respond, according to the U.K. Crown Prosecution Service, which represents Sweden in the case.

2010 Arrest

Assange, arrested in London in December 2010, is accused of failing to use a condom with one of the women and having sex with the other while she was asleep. The women, both supporters of WikiLeaks, let Assange stay at their homes during a speaking tour in Sweden in 2010. The U.K. Court of Appeal ruled in November that he should return to Sweden to face the claims. He hasn’t been charged with a crime.

The British appeal doesn’t involve the substance of the rape claims and focuses on Europe’s practice of honoring arrest warrants issued from any EU member country.

Rose told the Supreme Court at a hearing in February that a clarification of the law is needed because some of the EU’s 27 members allow prosecutors to issue such warrants and some require judges.

Rose also argued that Swedish prosecutor Marianne Ny’s actions -- probing the claims and then issuing a warrant herself -- breached the European rule “that nobody may be a judge in their own cause.”
Tags: , ,

About author

Make it happen !!


Leave a Reply