WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was arrested in London this morning. He was “arrested for failing to surrender to the court and following a US extradition request,” the BBC reported.
Assange’s lawyer, Barry J. Pollack, said in a statement sent to iMediaEthics:
While the indictment against Julian Assange disclosed today charges a conspiracy to commit computer crimes, the factual allegations against Mr. Assange boil down to encouraging a source to provide him information and taking efforts to protect the identity of that source. Journalists around the world should be deeply troubled by these unprecedented criminal charges.
The U.S. charged him with conspiracy to hack a computer. The New York Times posted the indictment online.
In a statement from the U.S. Department of Justice, the DOJ said Assange was “arrested today in the United Kingdom pursuant to the U.S./UK Extradition Treaty, in connection with a federal charge of conspiracy to commit computer intrusion for agreeing to break a password to a classified U.S. government computer.”
The press release statement continues:
“The indictment alleges that in March 2010, Assange engaged in a conspiracy with Chelsea Manning, a former intelligence analyst in the U.S. Army, to assist Manning in cracking a password stored on U.S. Department of Defense computers connected to the Secret Internet Protocol Network (SIPRNet), a U.S. government network used for classified documents and communications. Manning, who had access to the computers in connection with her duties as an intelligence analyst, was using the computers to download classified records to transmit to WikiLeaks. “
Assange has been living in the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012.
The Ecuadorean government kicked him out by ending his asylum, with president Lenin Moreno saying in a Twitter video it “reached its limit on the behavior of Mr Assange” and the “discourteous and aggressive behavior” of Assange has caused the government to decide to end his asylum.
“The most recent incident occurred in January 2019, when Wikileaks leaked Vatican documents….
“This and other publications have confirmed the world’s suspicion that Mr Assange is still linked to WikiLeaks and therefore involved in interfering in internal affairs of other states.”
This is a breaking news story that will be updated.