MOSCOW, November 20 (Sputnik) — A Swedish appeal court said on Thursday that it had rejected an appeal by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to lift his arrest warrant issued in 2010 over sexual assault allegations.
“The Court of Appeal agrees with the district court that Julian Assange is on probable cause suspected, among other things, of rape (lesser degree offense) and that there is a high risk that he absconds prosecution or punishment,” the Svea Court of Appeal (Svea hovratt) said in a statement.
"The Court of Appeal believes that there is no reason to cancel the arrest solely because Julian Assange is at an embassy and the warrant cannot be enforced at the present time for that reason,” the statement continued.
The Australian whistleblower has been wanted for alleged sexual assault in Sweden since 2010. He has denied the allegations and has been staying in the Ecuadorean embassy in central London since 2012, facing detention and extradition to Sweden if he steps outside.
Assange launched the WikiLeaks website back in 2006, taking the role of its editor-in-chief. Wikileaks made its name by releasing scores of classified diplomatic and military documents from governments around the world, most notably the United States.