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US says Assange could go to Australian prison if convicted | Election Hq – Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas, Nevada 2021-10-27 11:05:32 –

London (AP) — US officials launch a new battle on Wednesday to bring Julian Assange to face American justice, if he agrees to hand over the founder of WikiLeaks to a British judge on suspicion of spying. He said he could serve a US prison in his native Australia. ..

In January, a British lower court denied the US request to hand over Assange over the release of a secret US military document by WikiLeaks 10 years ago. District Judge Vanessa Barreizer determines that Assange, who has spent years hiding in a British prison to fight surrender, is likely to commit suicide if detained under harsh U.S. prison conditions. bottom.

In opposition to the January decision, a U.S. government lawyer denied that Assange’s mental health was too vulnerable to withstand the U.S. judicial system on Wednesday. Attorney James Lewis said Assange “has no history of serious and permanent mental illness” and does not meet the criteria of being ill enough to resist hurting himself.

U.S. prosecutors have charged Assange with 17 espionage charges and one computer misuse for WikiLeaks’ disclosure of thousands of leaked military and diplomatic documents. “The longest sentence ever imposed for this crime is 63 months,” Lewis said, but the prosecution can be sentenced to up to 175 years in prison.

Lewis said US officials sentenced Assange to his sentence in Australia if he was convicted without being detained before trial or exposed to strict quarantine conditions in the highest security “supermax” prison. He promised to be allowed to submit to. Lewis said the guarantee was “binding the United States.”

“It is no exaggeration to say that the district judge did not decide on relevant questions like her if it became clear that he would be repatriated to Australia and sentenced once proper medical care was guaranteed. “He says. Said.

The United States also mentions that key counsel Michael Kopelman, a neuropsychiatrist, and Stella Morris, a member of the WikiLeaks legal team, were also Assange’s partners and had him and two children. Without saying that he misunderstood the former judge. Lewis said the information was “a factor very relevant to the issue of suicidal potential.”

Assange’s lawyer, Edward FitzGerald, has accused US lawyers of “minimizing Mr. Assange’s risk of mental illness and suicide.”

Fitzgerald said in a written submission that Australia has not yet agreed to accept Assange if convicted. Even with Australia’s consent, Fitzgerald said U.S. legal proceedings could take 10 years, “while Assange remains extremely quarantined in U.S. prisons.” ..

Assange, held in London’s safe Belmarsh prison, was expected to attend a two-day hearing on Videolink, but Fitzgerald said Assange was taking high doses of the drug. “I feel I can’t attend.”

Assange later appeared on Videolink, sitting at a table in a prison room wearing a black face mask.

Assange has become a flash point since WikiLeaks began publishing confidential documents more than a decade ago. Some see him as a dangerous secret leaker who has endangered the life of the informant, while others have helped the United States in the war zone. Others say WikiLeaks has shed light on official fraud that the government wants to keep secret.

US prosecutors say Assange illegally helped US Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning steal classified diplomatic cables and military files later published by WikiLeaks. Assange’s lawyer argues that he is acting as a journalist and has the right to the first amendment to freedom of speech to publish documents exposing U.S. military misconduct in Iraq and Afghanistan. ing.

Dozens of Assange protesters held a noisy rally outside London’s Royal Courts of Justice on Wednesday, calling for the prosecution to have political motives. They urged US President Joe Biden to withdraw legal proceedings initiated under his predecessor, Donald Trump.

Demonstrators included Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei, whose Assange case was “related to our society, related to freedom of expression, related to personal human rights, and government. We have to monitor. “

WikiLeaks supporters testify from witnesses at extradition hearings that Assange was spyed by a Spanish security company at the request of the CIA while at the Ecuadorian embassy in London-and he There was even talk of kidnapping or killing-it is treated fairly, which undermines the US claim that he does.

The two judges who heard the appeal, one of England’s most senior judges, Judge Ian Burnett, are not expected to rule for weeks. The loser may try to appeal to the British Supreme Court.

Assange, 50, has been in jail since he was arrested in April 2019 for skipping bail during another court battle. Prior to that, he was trapped at the London Embassy in Ecuador for seven years and fled in 2012 to avoid being handed over to Sweden in the face of allegations of rape and sexual assault.

Sweden stopped investigating sex crimes in November 2019 after so much time had passed. A judge who blocked the deportation in January ordered that he must remain in custody during the US appeal, and ruled that Australian citizens “have abstention” if released.

Outside the court, Morris said the delivery was “not at all believed to be agreed by the British court.”

“I hope the court will end this nightmare, Julian will be able to return home soon, and a wise head will win,” she said.


Contributed by Associated Press writer David Keyton.

Copyright 2021 AP communication. all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.

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