The United Kingdom Supreme Court on March 14 denied WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange permission to appeal against a decision to extradite him to the United States to face spying charges.
The top court said that it had refused the permission to appeal because Assange’s application “didn’t raise an arguable point of law,” striking a major blow to Assange’s hopes to avoid U.S. extradition.
The case will now head back down to District Judge Vanessa Baraitser, who blocked the extradition in January last year, citing a real and “oppressive” risk of suicide in U.S. prison conditions.
UK Home Secretary Priti Patel is then expected to make a final decision.
Assange’s lawyers said that their client had not ruled out launching a final appeal. They will have four weeks to make a submission to Patel before she makes her decision.
Assange faces an 18-count indictment from the U.S. government over the publication of thousands of classified documents that revealed how the U.S. military had killed hundreds of civilians in unreported incidents during the Afghanistan and Iraq wars in 2010 and 2011.
The U.S. government argued that Assange broke the law and endangered lives by leaking the documents.
However, Assange claimed that the case was politically motivated.
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