U.K. Supreme Court to Rule on WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange's Extradition to Sweden

Julian Assange - Speaks to High Court - December 2010
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He would face rape and sexual assault charges in the Scandinavian country.

LONDON - The U.K. Supreme Court here will on Wednesday announce whether or not WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will be extradited to Sweden.

Assange, who was born in Australia and has been under house arrest in the U.K., last year took his battle to the U.K. High Court to avoid extradition to the Scandinavian country where he would have to face rape and sexual assault charges by two women. The charges were brought forth following his visit to Stockholm in Aug. 2010.

Assange's appeal was heard by a panel of seven of the 12 Supreme Court justices. The court picked up the case "given the great public importance of the issue raised, which is whether a prosecutor is a judicial authority," a court spokesman said late last year.

The judgment in the case Julian Assange v Swedish Judicial Authority will be unveiled Wednesday in the Supreme Court's largest court room given expectations for high interest from the media and the public alike.

"We do expect that demand for seats is likely to exceed the number of spaces we can safely make available to the public," the Supreme Court said.

Supreme Court president Lord Phillips will give a summary of the appeal process and the court’s decision. "The ‘handing-down’ of the judgment will take around 10 minutes," the court said.

Email: Georg.Szalai@thr.com

Twitter: @georgszalai