Wikileaks founder Julian Assange was arrested
this morning in London, on a Swedish warrant first issued in November. The 39-year-old Australian will now head to a British court, where authorities will have 21 days to decide whether or not to extradite him to Sweden. According to the extradition arrest warrant, Assange is suspected of one count of rape, two counts of molestation and one count of unlawful coercion. Swedish police, however, have yet to officially charge Assange, and issued the warrant simply to get him back to Sweden and discuss the allegations. Assange, meanwhile, had previously dismissed the sex crime-related suspicions as nothing more than an elaborate smear campaign.
But today's arrest doesn't necessarily mean that Assange will be heading back to Sweden anytime soon. His London-based legal team has already said they will argue against extradition, and, even if the court rules against their client, Assange could always appeal the decision, thereby delaying the process even further. As for Wikileaks, the site says it's going full-steam ahead, even as its founder faces legal troubles. "WikiLeaks is operating as normal, and we plan to release documents on schedule," declared spokesman Kristinn Hrafnson.