Court rejects Assange’s plea against extradition (Lead)

May 30th, 2012 - 5:29 pm ICT by IANS  

London, May 30 (IANS) Britain’s Supreme Court Wednesday dismissed Wikileaks founder Julian Assange’s appeal against extradition to Sweden where he faces allegations of sex crimes.

The 40-year-old Australian is accused of raping one woman and “sexually molesting and coercing” another in Stockholm in August 2010, but he claims that the allegations against him are politically motivated.

The judgment, which dismissed Assange’s appeal against extradition, was reached by a majority of five to two, the court’s president, Lord Phillips, told the hearing, as the court ruled the extradition request had been “lawfully made”, BBC reported.

Assange’s lawyers, however, still have 14 days to consider the ruling before a final decision is made, leaving a possibility of rehearing of the case.

An application would be made to reopen the case at the Supreme Court on the basis that its majority decision was made on legal points not argued during the appeal, said Dinah Rose QC for Assange.

Assange, who has been on conditional bail in Britain, could not attend the hearing held in central London. His lawyer later told reporters he was “stuck in traffic”.

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