U.K. Home Secretary Sajid Javid signed off on the U.S.’s request to have Julian Assange extradited back to the United States on Thursday. As The Washington Examiner reports:
U.K. Home Secretary Sajid Javid said on Thursday he signed and certified the U.S.’s extradition request for the WikiLeaks founder, in what Javid said means “the final decision is now with the courts.” A formal extradition U.K. court hearing will take place Friday.
“He’s rightly behind bars because he broke U.K. law,” Javid told BBC Radio 4. “It is a decision ultimately for the courts, but there is a very important part of it for the home secretary and I want to see justice done at all times and we’ve got a legitimate extradition request, so I’ve signed it.”
Assange, 47, had was arrested in April at Ecuador’s embassy in London on a single charge in the U.S. of conspiring to hack into a Pentagon computer network in 2010. This initial indictment revealed that prosecutors charged him with conspiracy to commit computer intrusion by agreeing to help Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning crack a password that would have given Manning access to a classified military network.
Federal prosecutors later accused the WikiLeaks founder of violating the Espionage Act as part of a new superseding indictmentin late May, charging him on 17 new counts in addition to the single count unsealed in early April.
Many people are divided about exactly what to think about Mr. Assange. Is he a whistleblower, or a traitor to the United States? Either way, it appears that he’s now set to finally face justice for his alleged crimes.