FILE PHOTO: WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange leaves Southwark Crown Court after being sentenced in London, Britain, May 1, 2019. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls/
STOCKHOLM (Reuters) – A Swedish prosecutor mentioned on Tuesday she wouldn’t proceed with an investigation into an allegation of rape in opposition to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange after a evaluate of the proof.
Deputy Chief Prosecutor Eva-Marie Persson mentioned that the complainant’s proof was deemed credible and dependable, however that after nearly a decade, witnesses’ reminiscences had light.
“After conducting a comprehensive assessment of what has emerged during the course of the preliminary investigation I then make the assessment that the evidence is not strong enough to form the basis for filing an indictment,” Persson advised a information convention.
The 48 year-old Australian citizen has repeatedly denied the allegation in opposition to him, made in 2010.
The transfer by the prosecutor heads off a doable dilemma for the British courts which might doubtlessly have needed to determine between competing extradition requests from the United States and Sweden. However, the prosecutor mentioned the choice to drop the investigation might be appealed.
Assange is being held in a British jail pending a listening to in February on extradition to the United States, which needs the 48 year-old Australian citizen over 18 legal counts together with conspiring to hack authorities computer systems and violating an espionage regulation.
He was dragged from the Ecuadorian embassy in London in April this yr after spending virtually seven years holed up there to keep away from extradition on the Swedish allegations. Since then, he has served a British jail sentence for skipping bail.
Reporting by Simon Johnson, Johan Ahlander and Niklas Pollard; Editing by Jon Boyle and Peter Graff