US AUTHORITIES have prepared charges to place Wikileaks founder Julian Assange in custody, officials have told CNN.
Assange has been holed up in London’s Ecuadorian embassy since 2012 over fears he may be extradited to Sweden – and has called for authorities to allow his release under an UN ruling which found his detention “unlawful”.
From The Express
The online site, which publishes sensitive and secret government documents, was praised by Donald Trump during the presidential campaign after it released private emails from the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager, John Podesta.
Yet now US officials claim they have found a way to move forward with his arrest despite the hacktivist extraordinaire saying he should be protected by the American first amendment – which defends free speech.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions revealed the WikiLeaks founder’s arrest was a “priority”.
He said: ”We are going to step up our effort and already are stepping up our efforts on all leaks.
“This is a matter that’s gone beyond anything I’m aware of.
“We have professionals that have been in the security business of the United States for many years that are shocked by the number of leaks and some of them are quite serious.
“So yes, it is a priority.
“We’ve already begun to step up our efforts and whenever a case can be made, we will seek to put some people in jail.”
It comes after CIA Director Mike Pompeo’s claims last week Wikileaks was a “hostile intelligence service” in the pocket of Russian actors.
He claimed WikiLeaks “directed Chelsea Manning to intercept specific secret information, and it overwhelmingly focuses on the United States”.
Chelsea Manning, a former US army soldier, was convicted of violating the espionage act nearly three-quarters of a million classified, or unclassified but sensitive, military and diplomatic documents.
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