On Monday (September 14, 2020),an American lawyer stated that WikiLeaks Founder, Julian Assange will face decades of imprisonment if found convicted on spying charges in an extradition hearing in Britain.
It was made clear by U.S. Persecutors that the 49-year-old Australian is to face 17 espionage Charges and one of computer misuse, over WikiLeaks publication of secret data of U.S. military decades ago. They also mentioned that a maximum of 175 years of imprisonment is awarded for the charges framed.
Attorney Eric Lewis a senior partner at Lewis Baach Kaufmann Middlemiss in Washington DC, appearing on behalf of defense witness pronounced that “a very aggressive approach to sentencing on the part of the government. All signs point to a very long sentence measured in many decades”.
He further mentioned that “we are looking at a sentence somewhere between 20 years, if everything goes brilliantly, to 175 years, which the government could easily ask.
Lawyers for WikiLeaks say that the prosecution is politically motivated, and Assange will not get the fair trial in the U.S. They also argued that the conditions he would face in prison would lead to the breach of human rights.
All this started decades back when WikiLeaks published classified U.K. military documents about wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The founder has been in a British prison since he was ejected from refuge in April 2019.
The extradition hearing began a week ago at London’s Central Criminal Court and on Monday, District Judge Vanessa Baraitser denied a request of Assange’s lawyers that everyone in the court wears masks for the reduction of transmission of a pandemic.
The hearing was briefly suspended last week while one lawyer for U.S. Government tested for COVID-19 but later confirmed negative.