World News

Swedish prosecutor drops rape probe into WikiLeaks' Assange

Swedish prosecutor drops rape probe into WikiLeaks' Assange

Prosecutors in Sweden said on Friday that they would drop their investigation into Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder who sought refuge in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London five years ago after the authorities in Stockholm opened a preliminary rape inquiry against him.

In a court document seen by Reuters, she said there were no further avenues to pursue to take the investigation forward.

The Metropolitan Police in London said, however, that they still planned to carry out a warrant issued after Mr. Assange failed to surrender in June 2012, and that it was "obliged" to execute the warrant if he were to leave the Ecuadorean Embassy. Following which he fears he could be extradited to the USA where he could face trial over the thousands of confidential military documents that his website has leaked.

At a press conference Friday in Stockholm, Ny, chief of the Swedish Prosecution Authority, said she "has made a decision to discontinue the investigation" and call back the European arrest warrant for Assange.

Britain and the U.S. have an extradition treaty, so if Assange leaves the Ecuadorian Embassy where he's claimed asylum, the British could arrest him and send him to the US.

"The UK has refused to confirm or deny whether it has already received a USA extradition warrant for Julian Assange".

However, reporters have now gathered outside the Knightsbridge embassy in the expectation he could finally leave after four years and 334 days.

CIA Director Mike Pompeo last month called WikiLeaks a "hostile intelligence service", and Attorney General Jeff Sessions, responding to a question about Assange, said the administration was stepping up its efforts against all leaks of sensitive information.

Though this is a much lesser offense, it remains a possibility that if Assange were to leave the premises of that embassy, he might yet be arrested by British police. The South American country has granted him asylum, but it is not clear how Assange would travel there without the permission of British authorities.

"Whilst Mr Assange was wanted on a European Arrest Warrant (EAW) for an extremely serious offence, the [Met Police] response reflected the serious nature of that crime".

The long-running case against Mr. Assange had suffered several setbacks. "Focus now moves to United Kingdom".

Ecuador's foreign minister, Guillaume Long, tweeted Friday that Britain "must now grant safe passage" to Assange. He has been there ever since, fearing that if he is arrested he might ultimately be extradited to the United States.

Prime Minister Theresa May earlier said any extradition case would be looked at on a "case-by-case basis".

Mr Assange has denied that he was given the leaked documents by Russian Federation, although he has refused to say where he got them.

Assange and WikiLeaks have repeatedly infuriated US officials with the widespread release of sensitive secret documents related to military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq and diplomatic relations around the world.

A lawyer for the woman who alleged she was raped by Assange said "it's a scandal that a suspected rapist can avoid the judicial system and thus avoid a trial in court". There were initially two separate allegations being investigated, but one was dropped in 2015 because the statute of limitations ran out.

During the presidential campaign in the United States, WikiLeaks came under criticism for distributing hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee.

Towards the end of his presidency, Barack Obama decided she should be freed and the former intelligence analyst was recently released from jail.

Assange has said that all the sex was consensual.

British police kept up round-the-clock guard outside the embassy until December 2015, when the operation was scaled back, in part because of the cost, which had exceeded 11 million pounds (over $17.5 million at the time).


  • Fox News co-founder Roger Ailes, 77, dies

    Ailes was the former Fox chairman and CEO of the network until he stepped down amid a sexual harassment scandal last summer. His death denies the rest of us the chance to hear his side of that particularly salacious story.

    Pueblo will dodge snow in latest storm

    There is another chance for rain and thunderstorms on Sunday when the high temperature could reach 64 degrees. As expected, much of the snow that fell here at lower elevations melted shortly after hitting the ground.

    Google I/O 2017: Google Assistant Comes to iPhone, Understands Typing, and More

    According to the company, the service will "roll out over the next few weeks" to all Android devices running the Google Play app. The Android O beta is available from today , though you'll need a supported device to be able to run it for the time being.
  • The Paul George Saga

    Thomas did just that when he arrived in Boston and he continues to lead the Celtics. With this series, we gotta go out and show the world.

    Harry Kane eyes Premier League goals century by end of next season

    Kane has been on fire for Tottenham this season, helping his side to cement second in the Premier League for the first time. Kane said: "I am sure he is not too happy". "In the whole team it's a very good quality of effort.

    Disputes Arise between Netanyahu, Trump over Relocation of US Embassy

    At least 10,000 Israeli police will be deployed to protect Donald Trump during his visit to the Jewish state on 22-23 May. He made no reference to suggestions the USA embassy might be moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
  • Facing Charges in NC in Massive United Blood Nation Gang Roundup

    Those named in the indictment include suspects already in jail on state charges and at least one person who is living in Liberia. Those named in the indictment include suspects already in jail on state charges and at least one person now living in Liberia.

    Kulbhushan Jadhav case: Arguments presented by India, Pakistan at ICJ

    While forcefully putting forth his argument, counsel for India Harish Salve said Pakistan denied 16 requests for counsel access. However, the ICJ denied permission to the Pakistani side to play the video at the hearing, Indian officials in New Delhi said.

    Kawhi Leonard on status for Game 3: 'It's just questionable for tomorrow'

    Spurs fans reportedly flooded Pachulia's Instagram account with so much vitriol, that the 33-year-old disabled his comments . The only way I can process this is I think it's not about the O's and X's or rebounds or turnovers or anything like that".
  • Paul Pierce Thinks Celtics Have To Trade The #1 Overall Pick

    With faith in D'Angelo Russell diminishing in LaLa Land, this year would be the ideal chance to take SoCal superstar Lonzo Ball . Throwing in the 2018 Nets pick gives in a chance at the top player next year, which would most likely be Michael Porter Jr.

    Does $7.27 justifies Spirit Realty Capital, Inc. (SRC) shares?

    Janney Montgomery Scott LLC bought a new position in Spirit Realty Capital during the first quarter valued at about $109,000. Breaking those down we see that the ratings are as follows: 12 Strong Buy, 2 Rated Buy, 3 Rated Hold and 0 Rated Sell.

    CONFIRMED: Enda Kenny will step down as Fine Gael Leader tonight

    "But regardless of the challenges we faced, Enda Kenny took them on with humour, grace, and determination", he said. I hold Simon in great esteem, but it's how I have seen Leo respond back to great need is why I'm supporting him.