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WikiLeaks Assange says US trying to prosecute him

2010-12-13 09:28

STOCKHOLM - WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who angered Washington by releasing secret cables, said in a documentary on Sunday he faced prosecution by the United States and was disappointed with how Swedish justice had been abused.

Assange has been remanded in custody in Britain after a European arrest warrant was issued by Sweden, which wants to question Assange about allegations made by two women of sexual crimes. He has denied the allegations.

"I came to Sweden as a refugee publisher involved with an extraordinary publishing fight with the Pentagon, where people were being detained and there is an attempt to prosecute me for espionage," Assange said in an interview in the documentary, aired on Swedish public television.

"So I am unhappy and disappointed with how the Swedish justice system has been abused," the 39-year-old Australian added in the documentary, which was made before his arrest.

Assange faces a fresh British hearing on December 14. His Swedish lawyer has said he will fight extradition to Sweden.

One of his British lawyers, Jennifer Robinson, told ABC News in London on Friday that a US indictment of Assange was imminent, but the report offered no further details or comment by Robinson why she believed charges were likely to be filed.

The US Justice Department has been looking into a range of criminal charges, including violations of the 1917 Espionage Act, that could be filed in the WikiLeaks case involving the release of hundreds of confidential and classified US diplomatic cables.

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