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Tags: judge | wikileaks | assange | extradition

UK Judge: WikiLeaks Founder Assange Cannot be Extradited to US

julian assange stands outside embassy with raised fist
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange greets supporters outside the Ecuadorian embassy in London on May 19, 2017, where he has been in self imposed exile since 2012. (Frank Augstein, AP Photo)

Monday, 04 January 2021 06:16 AM

A British judge ruled on Monday that WikiLeaks' founder Julian Assange should not be extradited to the United States to face charges of breaking a spying law and conspiring to obtain secret U.S. documents by hacking government computers.

U.S. authorities accuse Australian-born Assange, 49, of 18 counts relating to Wikileaks’ release of vast troves of confidential U.S. military records and diplomatic cables which they said had put lives in danger.

His lawyers had argued the entire prosecution was politically-motivated, powered by U.S. President Donald Trump and that his extradition posed a severe threat to the work of journalists.

At a hearing at London's Old Bailey, Judge Vanessa Baraitser rejected nearly all his legal team's arguments but said she could not extradite him as there was a real risk he would commit suicide and ordered his discharge.

"Faced with conditions of near total isolation ... I am satisfied that the procedures (outline by U.S. authorities) will not prevent Mr. Assange from finding a way to commit suicide," she said.

© 2021 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.


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A British judge ruled on Monday that WikiLeaks' founder Julian Assange should not be extradited to the United States to face charges of breaking a spying law and conspiring to obtain secret U.S. documents by...
judge, wikileaks, assange, extradition
168
2021-16-04
Monday, 04 January 2021 06:16 AM
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