Whisleblower Julian Assange in dock.
Swedish prosecutors have decided to reopen a 2010 rape investigation against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Sweden’s deputy director of public prosecutions,
Eva-Marie Persson informed this during a press conference in Stockholm today.
Swedish prosecutors had filed preliminary charges against Assange after he visited the country in 2010.
Seven years later, a case of alleged sexual misconduct was dropped when the statute of limitations expired. However, a rape allegation, couldn’t be pursued as Assange was living at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.
The reopening of a 2010 rape investigation against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will give him a chance to clear his name, the whistleblower website’s editor said today.
In a statement by the website, it is also said that there had been political pressure on Sweden to reopen the case against Assange, who is currently serving a 50-week sentence in Britain for breaching his bail conditions in 2012.
The more nation bully the Julian Assange the worst is states in media handling on one hand states talk to give media freedom to bring best of ethics in democracy and when one expose the states official it’s overall weakness .
Julian for such act been rewarded by many international organisation the same person is demolished by character assassination and other foul moves of different nations.
Swedish prosecutors said they are reopening a rape case against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and will seek his extradition from Britain.
The move sets up a legal battle with the United States, where the Australian computer hacker is separately wanted for allegedly hacking into a Pentagon computer. British authorities will have to decide which extradition request takes precedence.
Assange, who sought refuge in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London in 2012 to avoid being sent to Sweden for questioning, was evicted last month after Ecuador revoked his political asylum.
He was arrested by British police on April 11 and is currently in London’s Belmarsh Prison serving a 50-week sentence for jumping bail in 2012.
Eva-Marie Persson, Sweden’s deputy director of public prosecutions, told a news conference in Stockholm
Monday that “there is still a probable cause to suspect that Assange committed a rape”.
She added: “It is my assessment that a new questioning of Assange is required.”
Swedish prosecutors filed preliminary charges – a step short of formal charges – against Assange after he visited the country in 2010, following complaints from two Swedish women who said they were the victims of sex crimes committed by Assange.
While a case of alleged sexual misconduct was dropped in 2017 when the statute of limitations expired, a rape allegation remains. Swedish authorities have had to shelf it because Assange was living at the embassy at the time and there was no prospect of bringing him to Sweden.
The statute of limitations in that case expires in August next year. Assange has denied wrongdoing, asserting that the allegations were politically motivated and that the sex was consensual.
The Australian secret-spiller now faces questioning in Sweden, on top of being held on a ” extradition warrant for allegedly conspiring with former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning to hack into a Pentagon computer.
Assange’s Swedish lawyer Per E. Samuelson told The Associated Press on Monday that the decision to reopen the rape case is “outrageous.”
“He is in prison in the U.K., he faces the risk of being extradited to the United States and on top of that, to demand that he’s going to put all his energy into looking into a 10-year-old story from Sweden is just too much”, he said.
But Elisabeth Massi Fritz, the lawyer for the woman who reported being raped by Assange, said her client “feels great gratitude” over the decision to reopening the case. She said it “signals that no one stands above the law”, and that “the legal system in Sweden doesn’t give a special treatment to anyone”.
Assange faces a maximum of four years in prison in Sweden. The British extradition process is not swift, and Assange could appeal several times if decisions go against him.
It’s expected it would take a year or longer for him to be sent to the United States or possibly to Sweden even if he ultimately loses in court.
WikiLeaks’ Editor-in-Chief Kristinn Hrafnsson said the decision to reopen the case against Assange “will give Julian a chance to clear his name”.
He said in a statement that Persson had been under “intense political pressure” to reopen the case, and criticized authorities for “mishandling” it from the start.
Voice of Europe