Julian Assange faces extradition for sex crimes

A British judge ruled that the Wiki leaks founder can be extradited to Sweden. Assange's lawyer will request. 

Julian Assange can be extradited to Sweden in a sex crimes investigation, a British judge ruled Thursday, rejecting claims by the Wiki Leaks founder that he would not look a fair trial there. 

Assange's lawyer said he would appeal. Judge Howard Riddle said the allegations of rape and sexual molestation by two women beside Assange meet the definition of extraditable offenses and said the Swedish warrant had been properly issued and was valid. 

Assange, 39, a key number in the release of tens of thousands of secret U.S. government and military documents, has been out on security during the extradition fight. 

He has seven days to request the ruling in British courts. 

After inquiry three days of testimony this month, Riddle concluded "there is simply no reason to believe there has been a mistake" about the European Arrest Warrant issued by Swedish authorities. 

In his judgment, the judge dismantled the defense case against extradition point by point. He abandoned the claim that comments made against Assange by Swedish prosecutors and politicians would pervert the course of justice. 

Assange's lawyers also said that Sweden's institution of hearing rape cases behind closed doors meant he would not get a fair trial, but Riddle said the practice was frequent in Sweden. 

Wiki Leaks has released tens of thousands of U.S. military documents on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and on U.S. political efforts worldwide, deeply angering U.S. officials. 

"If he comes to Sweden I think he has great chances of being untied," Hurtig said. "And I will be waiting for him, ready to fight for him tooth and nail.

" Smith said Assange remains welcome at his residence".
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