WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange broke down into tears during a court hearing on Monday where he was denied the postponement of his upcoming extradition hearing.
District judge Vanessa Baraitser formally denied Assange’s request, after being unconvinced by the assertion by Assange’s defense team that he needed more time to gather and present evidence. She asked Assange, whose health has been waning substantially in recent months, if he understood what was happening during the court proceedings.
“Not really. I can’t think properly,” Assange said, as he struggled to formulate a coherent response. “I don’t understand how this is equitable. This superpower had 10 years to prepare for this case and I can’t access my writings. It’s very difficult where I am to do anything but these people have unlimited resources.”
“They are saying journalists and whistleblowers are enemies of the people. They have unfair advantages dealing with documents. They [know] the interior of my life with my psychologist. They steal my children’s DNA. This is not equitable what is happening here,” he added.
Mark Summers, who represents Assange in court as his legal counsel, argued that his client has been surveilled by the US and noted the apparent link between the “reinvigoration of the investigation and Donald Trump’s presidency.”
“This is part of an avowed war on whistleblowers to include investigative journalists and publishers,” Summers said. “The American state has been actively engaged in intruding on privileged discussions between Mr. Assange and his lawyer.”
Spanish courts are currently investigating a security firm that reportedly worked on behalf of the U.S. government to “obtain information by unlawful acts, thefts and clandestine surveillance within the Ecuadorian embassy … with increasing intensity from 2017 onwards.”
Summers felt that these developments should result in the delay of the trial, but the Judge disagreed, in what was likely a forgone conclusion headed into the hearing. The system is out to punish the leading whistleblower’s advocate who has regularly exposed embarrassing and incriminating state secrets through WikiLeaks.
Raucous protests raged outside of the court house on behalf of the political prisoner who may end up in the US before long:
Assange's supporters converge on van thought to be returning the Wikileaks founder to Belmarsh prison pic.twitter.com/qaHzM4tBA7
— Mattha Busby (@matthabusby) October 21, 2019
Amnesty International released a statement against Assange’s unjust imprisonment shortly after the hearing concluded.
“The British authorities must acknowledge the real risks of serious human rights violations Julian Assange would face if sent to the USA and reject the extradition request. The UK must comply with the commitment it’s already made that he would not be sent anywhere he could face torture or other ill-treatment,” said Massimo Moratti, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for Europe.
“The UK must abide by its obligations under international human rights law that forbids the transfer of individuals to another country where they would face serious human rights violations. Were Julian Assange to be extradited or subjected to any other transfer to the USA, Britain would be in breach of these obligations,” he added.
If he is extradited to the US, Assange faces 17 felony counts under the Espionage Act. If he is discharged into federal custody, he may ultimately receive the Jeffrey Epstein treatment, as dead men tell no tales. Assange may pay with his life for opposing the evil empire, but the impact his work has made throughout the world can never be erased.