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WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange Wrongly Accused of Sex Offense in Sweden

5 years ago
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Swedish authorities said Saturday an arrest warrant accusing WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange of rape was based on an unfounded claim and has been withdrawn, less than a day after it was issued.

"I don't think there is reason to suspect that he has committed rape," chief prosecutor Eva Finne said, according to the Associated Press. For the time being, prosecutors said he remains a suspect in a second, less serious molestation allegation. WikiLeaks had earlier denounced the charges as a "dirty trick."

Assange, a 39-year-old Australian, was already the subject of a worldwide controversy after his website posted some 76,000 classified documents related to the war in Afghanistan and vowed to put up more. U.S. officials say the postings could imperil American troops and Afghans who have aided them.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange
Assange, in an earlier statement on WikiLeaks Twitter page, said the rape allegations "are without basis and their issue at this moment is deeply disturbing." A WikiLeaks spokesman, who calls himself Daniel Schmitt, told the Associated Press the charges were "extremely serious" and came as a complete surprise to the organization. "We were warned to expect 'dirty tricks.' Now we have the first one," WikiLeaks said in another Twitter posting.

Expressen, a Swedish tabloid, broke the story. Assange was in Sweden last week, the AP said, in part to apply for a publishing certificate so WikiLeaks can take advantage of Swedish laws protecting whistleblowers.

WikiLeaks said it disclosed what it called the "Afghan War Diary" last month and made the documents available to some news organizations in the name of openness, so people could gain a wider understanding of the war in Afghanistan.

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One of Assange's accusers supposedly works for Expressen, the Swedish tabloid that broke the rape story - see the comment on: about half way down: 5 - @Michele. It appears that the tabloid Expressen got the information about the arrest order directly from the person who is accusing Assange for molestation. She has worked for Expressen and if this is the sinister revenge action many believe the goal for all this is to smear Assange. Posted by Editor At 07:41:15 AM On 08/23/2010 |

August 24 2010 at 3:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Much is being said about the wikileaks releases putting troops lives in danger but lies and secrecy by the military and the government put our freedom in greater danger. It is to be expected that retaliation against whistleblowers will occur but that is the price of freedom of information that must be paid. The lies the military spread about Pat Tillman's death prove the necessity of a free press to tell the truth that the powerful want to keep hidden. Knowledge is power and if the government controls the dissemination of information completely we are well on our way to the world Orwell predicted in his book 1984. Just as the "Pentagon Papers" release showed the lies told about Viet Nam to Americans these new releases show the lies being told about Afghanistan and Iraq.

August 21 2010 at 1:12 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Well Assange, when you use "dirty tricks" to do your own damage, you will probably experience something similar in return. You are putting lives in danger, and you are bucking up against some powerful people, people who can charge you with whatever they think sounds credible and have the wherewithal to make it stick. What did you expect? I imagine the powers that be will now conduct raids on all your known residences, gather whatever info they can, and start the intimidation of your supporters and acquaintances. Not something we like to hear or see, but what you are doing is despicable. Guess one must fight fire, with fire, from time to time, regardless of how distastful it is.

August 21 2010 at 12:16 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

So, Assange thinks this issue is disturbing, yet, he thinks it's perfectly ok to release classified information that may jeopardize the security of this nation? Very revealing as to how this guy thinks. He may have rights, but a line must be drawn when national security and the safety of lives is at stake. Doesn't he get this? The people giving him this information should be tried for treason as well.

August 21 2010 at 12:15 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

Where there is smoke, there is fire.

August 21 2010 at 12:15 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

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