WikiLeaks founder and whistleblower Julian Assange’s extradition hearing, which was earlier postponed due to the pandemic, will now reportedly resume from September 7. Taking to Twitter, WikiLeaks said that the date resumption of extradition trial has been set for September 7 but a court location has not been determined yet.
Breaking: A date of September 7 has been set for the resumption of Julian Assange's delayed extradition hearing. A court location has yet to be determined.— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) May 13, 2020
Last month, Assange’s lawyers had moved to court to argue about the postponement of extradition trial as they have had not full and unfettered access to their client. “The onset of the coronavirus crisis has reduced that already restricted access to unacceptably low levels,” the Don’t Extradite Assange Campaign had said in a statement.
Assange, who is kept in a maximum-security prison in southeast London, is fighting an extradition request from the United States on the charges of violating the Espionage Act and conspiring to hack into classified government documents. WikiLeaks founder is charged on 18 counts including computer intrusion, espionage for encouraging, receiving and publishing national defence information in cahoots with former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning.
Assange had also applied for a bail, in March, arguing that he was at risk of contracting the novel coronavirus in the British prison. However, Judge Vanessa Baraitser at Westminster Magistrates' Court rejected his bail plea saying the pandemic does not as of itself provide grounds for whistleblower’s release.
(Image credit: AP)