Swedish prosecutors are dropping a preliminary investigation into an allegation of rape against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, bringing to an end a 7-year legal stand-off. Scarlett Cvitanovich reports.
The investigation into rape allegations against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has been dropped. Swedish prosecutors saying there are no further avenues to pursue. The decision brings an end to a seven-year legal stand-off and is being heralded as a "total victory" by Assange's defence lawyer. But the Australian is still a wanted man. Assange has been holed up in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London since 2012, skipping bail to take refuge there to avoid extradition to Sweden over the allegation, which he denies. He feared Sweden would hand him over to the United States where he would face prosecution over WikiLeaks' publication of thousands of classified military and diplomatic documents, one of the largest infomation leaks in U.S. history. With the threat of extradition removed, Assange could potentially leave the embassy. However, UK police said on Friday (May 19) he will be arrested if he does, saying a warrant for the 45-year-old's arrest was issued when he failed to surrender to the court on 29 June 2012 and stating the Metropolitan Police Service is obliged to execute that warrant.