Julian Assange sex case: Swedish court upholds warrant

From BBC.com

A Swedish appeal court has upheld an arrest warrant against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, wanted for questioning over sexual assault claims.

The Court of Appeal refused Mr Assange’s attempt to have a detention order issued in 2010 revoked.

Mr Assange, who denies the allegations, has sought refuge in the Ecuadorean embassy in London to avoid extradition.

If he goes to Sweden, he fears he could be extradited to the US to face charges of leaking government documents.

Wikileaks has published thousands of secret documents, which have caused intense embarrassment for the US and lifted the lid on diplomatic relations.

‘No reason’

Two women in Sweden accuse Mr Assange, 43, of sexual assault.  (Note – The two women did not press charges, they just wanted him to get a blood test.  Sex was consensual.  This is a FRAME UP by a U.S. puppet regime – Sweden.)

Thursday’s decision at the Svea Court of Appeal in Stockholm ruled on an appeal against a similar decision by a lower court.

Mr Assange’s lawyers argued that the arrest warrant should be repealed because it could not be enforced while he was in the Ecuadorean embassy.

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Analysis by BBC World Affairs correspondent Paul Adams

Before and during his self-imposed incarceration inside the Ecuadorean embassy, Julian Assange has been trying to clear his name through a whole series of legal hurdles. So far without success.

Mr Assange’s lawyers have attempted to challenge the legal basis for the allegations against him. But the allegations won’t go away and today’s ruling, while critical of the prosecution’s failure to move the investigation forward, makes it plain that Mr Assange still has a case to answer.

It offers no opinion on Mr Assange’s claim that he cannot leave the safety of the Ecuadorean embassy without running the risk of being extradited to the United States and jailed for his role in the release of classified American military and diplomatic documents.

But the fact remains that no such US extradition request exists. A lengthy grand jury investigation has not apparently resulted in any form of indictment. In 2013, when former NSA contractor Edward Snowden began leaking his own stash of damaging material, the importance of Julian Assange suddenly receded.

Marianne Ny
Marianne Ny said prosecutors were continuing to consider how to take the case forward

 

The lawyers noted that Swedish prosecutors had not travelled to London to interrogate Mr Assange.

In a statement, the court said there was “no reason to set aside the detention solely because Julian Assange is in an embassy and the detention order cannot be enforced at present for that reason”.

But it also criticised Swedish prosecutors for not making enough effort to explore “alternative avenues” to interrogate Mr Assange, saying the “failure of the prosecutors to examine alternative avenues is not in line with their obligation”.

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