WikiLeaks head Julian Assange running from sex crime accusations

Julian Assange of WikiLeaks

Julian Assange is on the run from Swedish authorities who have issued an international arrest warrant against the WikiLeaks leader for sexual assault. Image: CC NewMediaDays/Flickr

Julian Assange of WikiLeaks has been reportedly seeking asylum in Switzerland, a country that international fugitives rely on for its neutrality. Assange is looking for a safe place to resume leaking after Swedish authorities issued an international arrest warrant Thursday charging him with sexual assault. Meanwhile, with Assange in hiding, some former WikiLeaks volunteers are forming their own venture to compete with WikiLeaks.

Julian Assange accused of rape

Julian Assange is wanted by the Stockholm Criminal Court, which believes he has some explaining to do about accusations of rape, sexual molestation and illegal use of force. The charges were filed by two different women who said the sex crimes occurred during the course of one week last August in Sweden. Assange’s lawyer, calling the accusations unwarranted, said the women didn’t file the charges until finding out they were both fooling around with Assange at the same time.

Julian Assange pushes his luck

Assange denies the sex crime allegations. He claims the charges are part of a U.S. plot to assassinate his character because of his WikiLeaks revelations. After Assange published a trove of classified documents about the Afghanistan War in July, he went underground, saying he feared being hunted down by the U.S. government. His fear didn’t stop Assange from publishing another pile of secret documents about the Iraq War in October. The last round of leaks by Assange drew the wrath of several governments worldwide for blowing the cover of U.S. informants. The Christian Science Monitor reported recently that Assange’s next target is the Russian government, a regime known for more than mere character assassination when it wants to silence its critics.

Disciples turn on Julian Assange

With Assange in hiding, a group of former WikiLeaks volunteers who bolted from the organization are planning to set up shop on their own. The Wall Street Journal reports that German Daniel Domscheit-Berg is a former Assange follower who left the fold in September. Domscheit-Berg has said that after the Afganistan and Iraq WikiLeaks events, there were documents left over that should have been published. He is planning to launch a different site to solicit whistle-blowers seeking to leak classified documents. A WikiLeaks spokesman wished him luck.



New York Daily News

Wall Street Journal

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