Stockholm court upholds arrest warrant for Wikileaks founder
STOCKHOLM, July 17 (RAPSI) – A district court in Stockholm on Wednesday upheld the arrest warrant issued for Wikileaks founder Julian Assange in 2010 on suspicion of rape and sexual harassment in Sweden.
The case against the Australian-born programmer and journalist was opened in August 2010, when two Swedish women told the police about their sexual encounters with Assange.
The motion to invalidate the arrest warrant on the grounds that it was issued years back was filed at the Stockholm court by Assange’s lawyers.
Assange, 41, was arrested in the UK in December 2010 and subsequently lost several trials there. Unable to avoid extradition to Sweden, he requested and was granted asylum at the Ecuadoran embassy in London in 2012. He hasn’t left the embassy premises since.
The UK authorities are resolved to honor their commitment to Sweden.
Assange said he was innocent and that the case against him was politically motivated. He believes the Swedish authorities plan to extradite him to the US.
Wikileaks earned worldwide fame after publishing the correspondence of the US State Department employees and US military personnel. The latter was leaked by Army intelligence analyst Pfc. Bradley Manning, who was sentenced to 35 years in prison for this.
Wikileaks also helped Edward Snowden, former employee of US intelligence agencies CIA, DIA and NSA, who uncovered the existence of numerous US global surveillance programs.