MPs urge United Kingdom to cooperate with Sweden in Assange case

MPs urge United Kingdom to cooperate with Sweden in Assange case

MPs urge United Kingdom to cooperate with Sweden in Assange case

On 11 April WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was arrested in the Ecuadorian embassy, following the revocation of his right for diplomatic asylum previously made by Ecuador's president Lenin Moreno. Assange was arrested earlier Thursday at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, and the US has charged him with conspiring with former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning to break into a classified government computer at the Pentagon.

After Assange was arrested and dragged into a police van in the British capital, American officials unsealed an indictment against him for computer hacking as part of his WikiLeaks whistleblowing activities.

More than 70 British members of parliament have signed a letter urging the home secretary to ensure that WikiLeaks cofounder Julian Assange is extradited to Sweden if a case there is reopened against him.

Women's groups have added to pressure on Sajid Javid to ensure Julian Assange is extradited to Sweden.

Shortly after his arrest, Assange was convicted of breaking his bail, meaning he now faces a possible 12 months in prison and maybe even extradition to the United States, where he could be put on trial for publishing classified information.

The sexual assault claim expired in 2015 and Swedish prosecutors dropped a preliminary investigation into the rape allegation in 2017, arguing that since Assange could not be reached, they could not proceed.

The MPs note that the investigation in Sweden was "discontinued only because of Assange's unavailability" while he was inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

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Assange is due to face Westminster Magistrates Court on May 2 via a video-link from prison over the United States extradition case.

But Ecuador withdrew his asylum status and allowed British police into the embassy on Thursday to arrest the white-bearded Assange.

Extradition lawyer Ben Keith said the court will not assess the evidence against Assange to determine his guilt or innocence but will scrutinize whether the offence he is accused of in the us would be a crime in Britain.

They will now re-examine the rape case to decide whether to resume it before the statute of limitations runs out in August 2020. Regardless, Assange will have to serve any prison sentence for skipping bail in 2012 for the sexual assault and rape allegations, which a judge will determine at a later date.

Prosecutors said they were looking again at the case after a request by the lawyer of the alleged victim. "We extradite most people to the U.S.".

Assange's attorneys fear that in case of his handover to the USA, he may face up to 35 years in jail or capital punishment.

"But, I do think he should answer those questions".

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