UK to decide on Assange's extradition
Thu, 24 Feb 2011 11:42:41 GMT
A court in Britain is to decide whether or not to extradite WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to Sweden over sex assault allegations.
During three days of legal argument earlier this month, Lawyer Geoffrey Robertson QC said that Assange had been fighting against his extradition while his trials could be held in secrecy in Sweden. According to Robertson, such secret hearings would be “a flagrant denial of justice ... blatantly unfair, not only by British standards but by European standards and indeed by international standards.”
Assange's lawyers said at the hearing that since Assange had not been charged with the crime, he should not be extradited. He could end up in Guantanamo Bay or on US death row, after the secret US military diplomatic documents were recently leaked by the WikiLeaks.
The former Swedish judge, Sundberg-Weitman, said Swedish prosecutors could question Assange via telephone or the Internet and there would be no need for him to return to Sweden. However, Swedish prosecutors said they wanted to question him in person over the sexual misconduct, which he denied doing.
The British court is predicted to either refuse Sweden's request based on human rights, or judge the warrant as a not properly issued one. However, in case the judge decides to extradite Assange, he should leave England within 10 days.
Assange's lawyers have planned to accuse Sweden's Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt for damaging a fair trial atmosphere by showing their client as "public enemy number one."
Assange's lawyers fought against his extradition to Sweden and said his allegation is not rape and that he had not been charged of any crime under European and English law yet.