London’s Metropolitan Police dragged Julian Assange out of the Ecuadorian Embassy, where he has been living for seven years, early this morning.
The arrest came after Ecuador dropped his asylum status on the basis of “discourteous and aggressive behavior,” effectively evicting him from the embassy. But Assange did not go quietly. He had to be carried out and handcuffed, yelling, “The UK must resist!”
He is now facing up to a year in prison after being found guilty of breaking his bail. He fled to the Ecuador Embassy in 2012 to avoid charges of rape and sexual assault from prosecutors in Sweden.
He is also facing extradition to the United States for charges of conspiring to commit computer intrusion in 2010 relating to the release of thousands of diplomatic and military documents on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. (RELATED: US Charges Assange For 2010 Role In Diplomatic Leaks)
WikiLeaks also came under fire in 2016 for releasing Russian hacked emails that were intended to disrupt Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
Though President Trump repeatedly supported the work WikiLeaks did at the time, he stated earlier today, “I know nothing about WikiLeaks. It’s not my thing, and I know there is something having to do with Julian Assange. I’ve been seeing what’s happened with Assange.”
But Senators on the hill are making it clear that they are not conflicted on the topic.
Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham reportedly said, “He’s not an American citizen, so he can’t be a traitor, but I have absolutely no use for Julian Assange … Whatever comes his way, he deserves.”
His extradition hearing is set for May 2, 2019, at Westminster Magistrates’ Court, though his lawyer said the ruling was “a dangerous precedent for all news media.”
She ended her address to the media after meeting with Assange and said he told her to say “I told you so” – a nod to his prediction that American officials would one day try to have him extradited and tried in the United States.
Tune in to see Julian Assange’s journey to the British courts.