- Julian Assange has had his request for a court postponement rejected
- His request was on the claim of ill health
- The court hearing is relating to his sexual assault charge
A few weeks ago it was reported that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange had been arrested following his removal from the Ecuadorian Embassy in London after staying there under asylum for over 7 years. His asylum was over claims of sexual assault and he was also in hiding due to his leaking of classified documents that belonged to the United States government.
Now, on May 28, 2019, it has been reported that Assange’s request through his legal representative to delay a court hearing due to his health has been rejected by a judge. The hearing in question is relating to the charge of sexual assault.
Details About the Case
The hearing is to take place on June 3, 2019, and the request for the hearing was made by a Swedish investigator who is heading the investigation into the rape allegation against him this month. Assange has denied the allegations thus far.
Per Samuelson, a Swedish defense lawyer stated that he had visited Assange in the British police custody where he has been held since his arrest last week and that he has sought to have his hearing postponed due to his health. According to Samuelson, his health condition is so poor that it was not possible to conduct a normal conversation with him.
“I meant that it should be postponed until I had time to meet again and go through the issues in peace and quiet. I suggested no specific date and meant it should be postponed until everything was ready, but the district court has now decided that this won’t happen,” he said.
The rape investigation was reopened in May 2019 after Assange was arrested. It had begun in 2010 but the case was dropped in 2017 after seven years of Assange living in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. Should the court order be granted, it could be the important first step in extraditing Assange from the United Kingdom which is being sought after by various parties including the United States. Assange is currently serving a 50-week sentence for violating bail terms.
Assange’s issues with United States authorities are related to the release of several classified documents through WikiLeaks which has led to 17 criminal charges against him. The British Court will have to review all extradition requests and the Home Secretary will eventually decide which one takes precedence over the others.