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Swedish prosecutor seeks warrant for Julian Assange

By Darryl Coote
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange speaks on the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London on August 19, 2012. File Photo by Kerim Okten/EPA
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange speaks on the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London on August 19, 2012. File Photo by Kerim Okten/EPA

May 20 (UPI) -- A Swedish prosecutor filed a request Monday to arrest WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange for a rape case nearly a decade ago that began his several years of living under asylum.

The request by Swedish Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Eva-Marie Persson came a week after she said Sweden is reopening the 2010 rape case. Assange is accused of sexually assaulting a woman while she slept in her home.

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Persson said she will issue a European arrest warrant to have Assange extradited to Sweden, where he's serving a 50-week jail sentence for jumping bail in 2012 related to the rape case.

The documents say the assault includes an "aggravating circumstance" because Assange did not use a condom, which was the "plaintiff's express will and prerequisite for sexual intercourse."

The original investigation was dropped when Assange was granted asylum by the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. Swedish authorities began to restart the case last month after the embassy expelled him and he was arrested by British police.

Assange also faces extradition to the United States over a computer hacking charge. He faces up to five years in prison on charges he conspired with former U.S. Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning to break into Department of Defense computers.

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On May 2, Assange told a British court that he would fight extradition.

"I don't wish to surrender myself for extradition for doing journalism that has won many, many awards and protected man people," he said.

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