WikiLeaks founder to be extradited to SwedenFebruary 24th, 2011 - 7:06 pm ICT by IANS
London, Feb 24 (IANS) Julian Assange, Australian whistleblower and founder of WikiLeaks, will be extradited to Sweden to face allegations of rape and sexual assault, a British court ruled Thursday.Assange has been fighting extradition since he was arrested and released on bail in December here last year. He has denied the allegations made by two women in August.
Chief magistrate Howard Riddle delivered the judgment during a hearing at Belmarsh magistrate’s court in London, the Guardian reported.
However, an appeal is expected against the judgment, which would delay his extradition.
During a two-day hearing earlier this month, Assange’s lawyers argued that he would not receive a fair trial in Sweden.
They said the European arrest warrant issued by Sweden was invalid because the Australian national has not been charged with any offence and that the alleged assaults would not be legitimate extraditable offences.
Assange fears that an extradition to Sweden would make it easier for the US government to extradite him to America to face charges relating to the media release by WikiLeaks of leaked US embassy cables.
Though, Sweden would have to take permission from Britain for the onward extradition to the US.
Assange will now be in custody, because there is no system of bail in Sweden, until a possible trial or release.
The Australian ambassador to Sweden, Paul Stephens, wrote to the country’s justice minister last week to insist that, if extradited, any possible case against Assange “would proceed in accordance with due process and the provisions prescribed under Swedish law, as well as applicable European and international laws, including relevant human rights norms”.
- Assange attacks British judge's extradition order - Feb 26, 2011
- Wikileaks founder Assange fears 'execution or Guantánamo detention' if extradited - Jan 12, 2011
- Assange challenges extradition - Jul 12, 2011
- WikiLeaks founder's extradition trial begins in Britain - Feb 07, 2011
- Australia expects Sweden to treat Assange justly under Swedish, international law if extradited - Feb 19, 2011
- Assange to appear in court over extradition case - Jan 11, 2011
- Appeal against Assange's extradition filed in High Court - Mar 03, 2011
- Assange extradition case goes to British supreme court - Dec 16, 2011
- Assange gets bail, says WikiLeaks to continue its work (Lead) - Jan 11, 2011
- Assange's lawyers set to publish entire extradition defence online - Feb 07, 2011
- US targets Twitter to trap Assange over 'secret diplomatic cables' revelations - Feb 15, 2011
- End witch-hunt against WikiLeaks: Assange urges US - Aug 19, 2012
- 'Assange has not broken Australian law' - Dec 17, 2010
- Assange claims he has got secret files on Murdoch - Jan 13, 2011
- Assange fights extradition in British Supreme Court - Feb 01, 2012
Tags: allegations, australian ambassador, chief magistrate, due process, european arrest warrant, extradition, human rights norms, julian, justice minister, london feb, offence, paul stephens, relevant human rights, riddle, sexual assault, swedish law, two women, us government, whistleblower, wikileaks