18 criminal charges have been filed against the WikiLeaks founder in the US
The administration of the new US President Joe Biden intends to seek the extradition of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange from Britain to the United States. The electronic version of The New York Times reported this on Friday.
The publication cites a comment by Mark Raimondi of the US Department of Justice, which also serves as attorney general’s office. “We continue to seek extradition,” the official said. As the publication states, “the Biden administration has made it clear that it is now continuing the attempts made by his predecessor [as US President Donald Trump] to bring Julian Assange to justice.”
The story reports that the US Justice Department this week sent documents to a court in London to challenge a ruling that Assange could not be extradited to the US. The newspaper reports that US authorities had previously intended to provide the British court with evidence showing that US prisons treat prisoners humanely.
The newspaper quotes a spokeswoman for Reporters Without Borders. She expressed “deepest disappointment” that under Biden, the US Justice Department would continue to seek Assange’s extradition.
There have been 18 criminal charges against Assange in the US, which together face up to 175 years in prison. He is charged in particular with offences relating to the biggest case of disclosure of classified information.
A court in London ruled on 4 January that it would be unlawful to extradite Assange to the US because the autistic and clinically depressed WikiLeaks founder is prepared to commit suicide and carry out his plan if he ends up in a US prison. The judge’s findings are based on the assessments of psychologists and experts. They worked with Assange and gave their assessment of conditions in US maximum security prisons, where prisoners have little or no contact with other people. According to the judge, a razor blade had been found in Assange’s cell, and he had also managed to draw up a will.