Assange's Swedish arrest warrant remains

JOHAN AHLANDER
Last updated 04:31 17/07/2014
Julian Assange
STILL WANTED: A Swedish court has upheld the arrest warrant for Wikileaks founder Julian Assange over sexual assualt allegations.

Relevant offers

Europe

Hacked BBC Northampton tweets that Donald Trump shot British cops use a Taser on a black man they thought was a robber; he was their race relations adviser British PM Theresa May probed after missile 'misfires' from nuclear submarine Four more survivors pulled out of Italy's avalanche-hit hotel At least 16 killed in fiery school bus crash on Italian highway Ten pulled alive from avalanche hotel in Italy after snow created 'igloo' Prince William quits pilot job, will move family to London for full-time royal duties Davos - the rich are worried Bana Alabed's favourite lesson is English, but 380,000 child refugees are missing out on their education Europe's right-wing leaders to meet in Germany

A Swedish court upheld on Wednesday (local time) an arrest warrant for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange who has spent two years at Ecuador's London embassy to avoid extradition to Sweden over allegations of sexual assault.

Swedish prosecutors want to question Assange over the allegations made by two female former WikiLeaks volunteers. Assange denies the allegations and has been fighting a legal battle against extradition since his arrest in Britain in December, 2010.

Assange says he fears Sweden could in turn extradite him to the United States to be tried for one of the largest leaks of classified information in US history.

"All in all, the district court makes the assessment that the reasons for the arrest warrant offset the infringement and adverse effects the measure entails for Julian Assange," District court judge Lena Egelin said.

"He should therefore continue to be wanted for arrest in his absence."

Assange's lawyers have argued the arrest warrant should be repealed because it cannot be enforced while Assange is in the embassy and the Swedish prosecutor had not considered the possibility of interrogating him in London.

Thomas Olsson, one of Assange's Swedish lawyers, said he would appeal the verdict.

Ecuador, which has granted Assange political asylum, wants London to assure him safe passage to Quito. But Britain has surrounded the Ecuadorian embassy with police officers round the clock ready to detain him if he leaves it.

British police say they have spent six million pounds (NZ$11.79 million) from June 2012 until March this year on policing costs at the Ecuadorian embassy.

In an interview with Reuters last year, Assange said he would not leave the sanctuary of the embassy in London even if Sweden stops pursuing sexual assault claims against him because he feared arrest on the order of the United States.

Ad Feedback

- Reuters

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content