News World Swedish prosecutor requests Assange's detention over rape allegation

Swedish prosecutor requests Assange’s detention over rape allegation

The Swedish prosecutor heading an investigation into a rape allegation against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange filed a request with a local court on Monday for him to be detained in absentia.

If granted, the court order would be the first step in a process to have Assange extradited from Britain, where he is serving a 50-week sentence for skipping bail.

Sweden reopened the rape investigation last week. It was begun in 2010 but dropped in 2017 after Assange took refuge in the Ecuadorean embassy in London.

Assange, who denies the accusation, was arrested in London last month after spending seven years inside the embassy.

“I request the District Court to detain Assange in his absence, on probable cause suspected for rape,” Deputy Chief Prosecutor Eva-Marie Persson said in a statement on Monday.

She said she would issue a European arrest warrant for Assange to be surrendered to Sweden if the court decided to detain him.

Sweden’s decision to reopen the rape investigation casts doubt on where Assange may eventually end up, with U.S. authorities already seeking his extradition over conspiracy charges relating to one of the biggest ever leaks of classified information.

A lawyer representing Assange in Sweden said he would tell the District Court it could not investigate the prosecutor’s request until he had conferred with his client and learned whether or not he wished to oppose a detention order.

“Since he is in prison in England, it has so far not been possible even to speak to him by telephone,” Per Samuelson told Reuters.

Assange, an Australian national, took refuge in the embassy after fighting unsuccessfully through the British courts to avoid extradition to Sweden.

The British courts will have to rule on the Swedish and U.S. extradition requests, with interior minister Sajid Javid having the final say on which one takes precedence.

“The outcome of this process is impossible to predict,” Persson said. Citing information from UK authorities, she said Assange would serve 25 weeks of his UK sentence before he could be released.

A British judge has given the U.S. government a deadline of June 12 to outline its case against Assange.

(Reuters)

Top Stories

Brazil COVID-19 deaths reach 100,000 and barrel onward

  Brazil’s death toll from COVID-19 is expected to hit 100,000 today and continue to climb as most Brazilian cities reopen shops and dining even...

Latest Covid infographics-870 recoveries, good on testing, no patients in ICUs

  870 people out of a total of 1207 cases (as of August 6), have fully covered from Covid-19 in Cyprus. Out of 26 deaths,...

Police to charge Aradippou mayor for not wearing protective mask (update)

  Police will be filing a case against Aradippou mayor Evangelos Evangelidis in the coming days, for violating Covid-19 prevention directives. As spokesman Christos Andreou told...

Death toll from Indian passenger aircraft accident rises to 18

  The death toll from an Indian passenger aircraft accident has risen to 18, while 16 people have been severely injured, a senior government official...

Forestry head shocked by heinous arson in Kouklia-Dora

  Director of Forestry Services Charalambos Alexandrou expressed utter shock and rage at today's criminal act against Cyprus, commenting on the mass arson causing a...

Taste

Octopus ‘Kathisto’ (or Octopus braised in Wine)

Ingredients: 1/2 cup Greek extra virgin olive oil 2 medium onions, chopped fine 1 large octopus, about 2kg (cleaned and kept whole) 3/4 cup dry red wine 1/3 cup...

Homemade lemonade

Ingredients: 1 cup lemon juice 1 cup sugar Method: Thoroughly wash the lemons with soap and warm water. Roll each lemon with the palm of your hand, pressing...

‘Striftaria’ mini cheese pies

Ingredients 1 ½ cup milk 2 tbsps. flour 4 tsps. of butter 3 eggs, slightly beaten + 1 extra with 1 tbs. of milk for spreading 1 pack of...

Mini potato canapes baked on salt

Ingredients Serves: 12 1kg small Cypriot potatoes rock salt, as needed 250g salted butter 300ml full fat cremé frâiche 1 pot cod or salmon roe Method Prep:20min › Cook:35min › Ready in:55min Take...