UK court rejects bail plea of Julian Assange

London: The Westminster London District Magistrates’ Court has rejected the bail application of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on the grounds that he had previously violated the bail conditions.

According to a Sputnik report, Assange was denied bail on the grounds that he had previously violated the bail conditions.

The Court said that he will remain in prison pending a US extradition appeal to face charges for leaking secret documents.

Earlier the bail petitions of the WikiLeaks founder on the same grounds.

Meanwhile, Kristinn Hrafnsson, WikiLeaks Editor-in-Chief, has been quoted saying, “This denial of bail will most likely be appealed, in the High Court, within hours or a few days and we will expect it to be overturned.”

Hrafnsson said that he believes the ruling was “unjust, unfair and illogical” arguing that Judge Vanessa Baraitser’s previous ruling to deny extradition was made on grounds of mental health issues caused, in large part, by detention in Belmarsh prison, Sputnik reported.

On January 4, a British judge had rejected the United States request to extradite WikiLeaks founder and whistleblower Julian Assange.

UK District Judge Vanessa Baraitser indicated that extradition would have a harmful effect on Assange’s mental health and said she ruled against the US request due to fears that the whistleblower has a high risk of committing suicide as a result, Sputnik reported.

Assange is wanted in the US on the charges of conspiring with Chelsea Manning, an American activist and whistleblower, to commit computer intrusion into the Department of Defence network to steal classified documents, namely Afghan and Iraq war logs and secret Department of State cables.

Assange is also facing 17 charges under the US espionage Act 1975 in connection with his release of the logs and cables. If proven guilty on all counts, Assange would face a sentence of up to 175 years.

Several witnesses indicated that Assange’s prison conditions put him at high risk for depression and suicide.

Psychiatrist Michael Kopelman, who also testified in court, claimed that a razor blade was found hidden in Assange’s cell, adding that his patient was engaged in thinking about ways of ending his own life.

Assange was taken to prison in April 2019 after being dragged out of the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he had lived for years.