Priti Patel, the British Secretary, accepted Julian Assange’s deportation to the United States; he risks up to 175 years in jail on spying and internet abuse charges.
They Finally Did It
The years-long fight over Julian Assange’s destiny was handed over to Secretary Priti Patel after one British Supreme Court judge ruled the Wikileaks co-founder may be allowed to return to the United States.
That’s despite a prior court ruling blocking the move, due to fears Assange would attempt suicide inside an American prison.
As per The Guardian, Patel ruled the extradition agreement from American authorities met all legal requirements, including guarantees that Assange would not face a death sentence.
Though Patel decided on Friday the arrest may proceed, Assange’s legal team is anticipated to file a new appeal.
It will likely focus on claims the arrest is politically driven and reporters’ freedom of speech rights are being violated.
BREAKING: UK Home Secretary approves extradition of WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange to the US where he would face a 175 year sentence – A dark day for Press freedom and for British democracy
The decision will be appealedhttps://t.co/m1bX8STSr8 pic.twitter.com/5nWlxnWqO7
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) June 17, 2022
“Neither have they determined repatriation would be inconsistent with his civil rights, such as his right to due process and freedom of speech, or that he’d be treated adequately in the United States, especially in terms of his health.”
“This is a bad day for freedom of the press and for British democracy,” Assange stated in a statement in response to the judgment.
“Anybody who appears to care about free expression in this country should be truly ashamed that the Home Secretary has authorized Julian Assange’s arrest warrant,” he said, repeating claims the US government schemed to kill the Australian citizen in retaliation for his leakage of CIA data.
“Julian made no mistakes. He hasn’t done anything wrong and isn’t a criminal. He’s a publisher and a journalist who’s being persecuted for doing his job.”
WikiLeaks has threatened to file a further appeal before the High Court and to hold “louder” rallies in the streets of Britain to ensure “Julian’s narrative” is “known to all.”
The US requested that Assange be extradited to the US to face 17 counts of spying and desktop misapplication.
US officials insinuated the WikiLeaks founder illegally aided US Army intelligence officer Chelsea Manning in stealing secret material from leaked documents and army files.
Exclusive Video: Julian Assange’s Father Calls on America to Respect the First Amendment https://t.co/8CKzl4U3vg
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) February 26, 2020
By releasing the documents from Manning, WikiLeaks was charged with endangering the lives of American intelligence agents and informants.
Mr. Assange’s team of lawyers made the argument that the history of WikiLeaks pertaining to US military efforts and purported wrongdoing in Iraq and Afghanistan must be protected by the Constitution.
His team cited the Supreme Court’s ruling that previous leaks of classified material, such as the Pentagon Papers published by the New York Times, were legal under the First Revision.
“I hope Americans turn to their administration and urge that their administration obey the First Amendment completely,” Assange’s father, John Shipton, said during an appearance with Breitbart London in 2020.