The Swedish public prosecutor's office announces the abandonment of the rape prosecution against Julian Assange. The founder of WikiLeaks was accused by a woman of having assaulted her in Sweden in 2010.
The 48-year-old Australian computer scientist, who has always denied the facts, is being held in London. He is still under a threat of extradition to the United States, where he must be tried for espionage. Unless the plaintiff appealed, the decision of the Swedish public prosecutor's office closed a chapter nearly 10 years old.
Swedish justice throws in the towel for lack of sufficient elements. "A lot of time has passed since then with the result of weakening the evidence, " said the Deputy Chief Prosecutor, during a press conference in Stockholm.
The investigation was reopened in May 2019 , after the arrest of the whistleblower at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London when the judiciary had once abandoned the prosecution in 2017.
A case dating from 2010
Eva-Marie Persson has therefore decided to dismiss the investigation, while in less than 9 months, the facts will be prescribed. It was in 2010 that the facts would have unfolded. The Swedish plaintiff, aged around 30, accuses Julian Assange of having sex while sleeping and without a condom, while she denied him any unprotected sex on several occasions . He has always denied the facts of rape.
The decision of the Swedish public prosecutor's office, if not contested on appeal, saves, in any case, a dilemma to the British justice. The latter had to decide between extradition requests from Washington and Stockholm.
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In the United States, Julian Assange faces up to 175 years in prison for spying. US officials blame him for endangering some of their sources by publishing hundreds of thousands of diplomatic cables and confidential documents on the internet about the US military's activities in Iraq and Afghanistan. The hearing on the extradition request is to be held in February in London.