A Swedish court dealt state prosecutors a blow on Monday, denying a request for a Euroepan Arrest Warrant (EAW) to detain WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange for extradition once his 50-week sentence is up in the UK for skipping bail.
Swedish deputy director of public prosecution, Eva-Marie Persson, had requested the detention - arguing that Assange posed a flight risk. Assange's attorney, Per E. Samuelson, countered that the WikiLeaks founder would be willing to come to Sweden to cooperate with the investigation, and that his client has nothing to hide.
The Uppsala district court denied the request when it was clear that Swedish authorities were not finished with their preliminary investigation into a 2010 rape claim. Samuelson argued that under new rules, EAWs cannot be obtained to conduct preliminary investigations - and the prosecution must instead apply for a European investigation order.
This means that the prosecution will need to complete its preliminary investigation without Assange's extradition to Sweden, and will instead have to travel to the UK for interrogations, or conduct them via video.
6/x— 𝖢𝗁𝗋𝗂𝗌 👴 (@ChrisSpowe) June 3, 2019
It is not until the preliminary inevstigation is complete and a formal decision has been made by prosecutors to press charges against #Assange that it is legally possible to request his extradition. And the prosecution stated that their NOT done yet with the investigation.
Before they decide whether to press charges, Swedish prosecutors are seeking to question Assange, who is currently being held at UK's Belmarsh Jail.
Last month Assange was charged by the US with 18 counts related to endangering national security by conspiring with whistleblower Chelsea Manning to obtain and disclose classified information.