UK court orders Julian Assange to be extradited to the US

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Julian Assange. Jack Taylor/Getty Images
Julian Assange. Jack Taylor/Getty Images

  • UK court rules Julian Assange should be extradited to the US.
  • He faces 18 charges in the US, which could lead to 175 years in prison.
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A UK judge ruled on Wednesday for Julian Assange to be extradited to the US, WikiLeaks and CNN reported.

Assange faces 18 charges in the US, which accused him of conspiring to hack government computers and breaching the Espionage Act when WikiLeaks published a trove of confidential military and diplomatic documents in 2010. He faces up to 175 years in prison if he is convicted.

A UK court ruled in January that Assange could appeal an earlier court ruling that he can be extradited to the US, but the UK Supreme Court refused to hear his case in March.

A summary of that earlier ruling said the US had assured the UK that Assange would "receive appropriate clinical psychological treatment" in the US. The US also said it would let Assange serve his sentence in Australia, his home country, if he asks to do so.

Human-rights groups say Assange should not be criminalised for sharing information in the public interest, and that he would not be safe in the US.

The final decision on whether to extradite Assange now lies with UK Home Secretary Priti Patel.

But Assange is able to appeal the decision again, CNN reported.

Assange was living for years in Ecuador's embassy in London as an asylum seeker. He taken to prison in the UK when Ecuador withdrew its protection of him in April 2019, and the police dragged him out of the embassy.

The US then requested to extradite him.

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