Swedish court moved to order detention of Wikileaks founder over rape allegations

on November 18 2010 11:23 AM
Swedish court approached to detain Wikileaks founder over rape allegations
Julian Assange, founder of WikiLeaks, holds a news conference at the Geneva Press Club in Geneva, November 4, 2010. (File) REUTERS/Valentin Flauraud

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is likely to be detained for questioning over his alleged connection to a rape case. The Director of Prosecution, Marianne Ny, has requested the District Court of Stockholm to detain Assange, claiming that they have not been able to meet with him to accomplish the interrogations.

I request the district court of Stockholm to detain Mr Assange in his absence, suspected of rape, sexual molestation and unlawful coercion, Ny said in a statement.

A hearing on the issue is scheduled for Thursday afternoon and if the appeal is considered, an international warrant could be issued for his arrest.

A Swedish woman appealed to the court accusing the 39-year-old Australian of raping her during his visit to the country in August. A warrant was issued against him in the same month but was later dropped as the prosecutors claimed he was no longer a suspect in the case. But in September, the case was re-opened after the Public prosecutions maintained that there was 'reason to believe a crime has been committed' and it could be classified as rape. He was not detained then and was allowed to travel freely outside the country.

Assange, however, denied the charges and attributed them to a smear campaign against him and his website for publishing 75,000 leaked US documents about the war in Afghanistan.

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