(UnitedVoice.com) – Wikileaks Founder Julian Assange has spent years fighting extradition to the United States. The government wants to put him in prison for decades on espionage charges. He has now been dealt a crushing blow in his fight to remain abroad.
On Friday, December 10, a British court ruled he could be sent to the US to face charges. Two of the United Kingdom’s most senior judges ruled against the journalist. The new ruling overturned a district court ruling that prevented his extradition based on America’s restrictive prison conditions.
US prosecutors made several concessions, promising the British court that Assange would not face the strictest conditions unless he committed a crime that warranted them after placing him in jail. Many of his supporters called on the court to free him ahead of the hearing.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange moved a step closer to facing criminal charges in the U.S. for one of the biggest ever leaks of classified information after Washington won an appeal over his extradition in a British court https://t.co/zwSGq7czWM pic.twitter.com/S4SUtkvUmx
— Reuters (@Reuters) December 10, 2021
The Justice Department is charging Assange under the Espionage Act because he received, and published, classified government documents on his website, Wikileaks. Critics have said he’s protected under the First Amendment of the Constitution.
Assange’s case was sent back to Westminster magistrates court with instructions that a district judge send it to the secretary of state. The UK government official will decide whether to extradite Assange.
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