Esther Addley and Alexandra Topping
Feb 24, 2011
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is to be extradited to Sweden to face allegations of rape and sexual assault. Assange will appeal, his legal team confirmed. If this is unsuccessful, he will be extradited to Sweden in 10 days.
Delivering his ruling at a hearing at Belmarsh magistrates court in London, the chief magistrate Howard Riddle systematically dismissed each of the defence’s arguments against Assange’s extradition.
Assange’s legal team had disputed that Swedish prosecutor, Marianne Ny, had the authority to issue a European arrest warrant, but the judge ruled that she did possess this authority and the warrant issued was valid.
Ny’s credibility had been questioned by the defence team, but the judge dismissed those doubts which he said amounted “to very little”. The retired judge who criticised her, Brita Sundberg-Weitman, had no first-hand knowledge and no evidence as to source of her opinion, he said.
This article was posted: Thursday, February 24, 2011 at 5:30 am