No Charges Yet, But They Could Be Made Within 24 Hoursby Jason Ditz, September 05, 2012Print This | Share This
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s lawyer Baltazar Garzon today reiterated concerns that his client could be “traded” by Sweden to the United States if he is extradited to the Scandinavian nation for questioning, saying that US prosecutors have already prepared a case against him. Though Assange has repeatedly said he would have no trouble going to Sweden, he wants assurances that he will not be immediately transferred to the US, where officials have called him a terrorist and members of Congress have demanded his execution.
Sweden has openly refused to promise not to send him on to the US if it gets ahold of Assange, while US officials have only said that there are no current charges against him. While Garzon conceded that point, he says that preparations have progressed to the point that charges could be laid on Assange within a matter of 24 hours when the US gets the sense it could acquire him.
A trial against Assange would be a difficult one, because despite harsh rhetoric it isn’t apparent that he broke any laws in passing on newsworthy documents to the media. The real question, and the one which sparked the entire asylum row with Britain and Ecuador, is whether Assange would get a trial at all in the US, or whether he would simply be detained on the president’s say-so.
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