Assange Extradition Hearing Is Slated for 2020

It's expected to last 5 days, beginning Feb. 25
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 14, 2019 11:27 AM CDT
In this file photo dated Wednesday May 1, 2019, buildings are reflected in the window as WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is taken from court.   (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, FILE)

(Newser) – Anyone placing bets on whether Julian Assange will be extradited to the US won't see a windfall or have to pay up until 2020. On Friday it was decided in Westminster Magistrates' Court that a full extradition hearing would take place beginning Feb. 25, 2020. The BBC reports it will likely last 5 days. The AP reports interim hearings will likely take place in July and October. Assange appeared via video link, telling magistrates "175 years of my life is effectively at stake."

He described WikiLeaks as simply a publisher; Ben Brandon, the British lawyer representing the US, countered that Assange prodded Chelsea Manning to access documents illegally and cracked a Pentagon computer's password. "I didn't break any password whatsoever," Assange piped up, per the Guardian. The DOJ has charged Assange under the Espionage Act; Assange's lawyer dubbed the case "an outrageous and full-frontal assault on journalistic rights." As for Assange's health, which has previously been reported as poor, the AP notes the 47-year-old "appeared to be tired and showed signs of a possible hand tremor." (Read more Julian Assange stories.)

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