Sweden's extradition of Assange approved

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Sweden's extradition of Assange approved

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A British judge has ruled that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange should be extradited to Sweden to face sexual offense charges.

Assange denies the sexual assault and rape allegations against him and claims they are politically motivated. He has infuriated the United States government by publishing embarrassing secret diplomatic documents online.

His lawyers had argued that he would not face a fair trial that is open to the public in Sweden and that he then risks being extradited to the US to face charges related to his whistle-blowing activities and could face the death penalty.

A lawyer representing Swedish prosecutors said that the evidence in the sex offense trial would be heard behind closed doors but that the arguments would be then made public.

Assange was arrested under a European Arrest Warrant in December before being released on bail nine days later. His lawyer says he will appeal the Swedish extradition ruling.