Assange bail guarantors ordered to pay up

2012-10-08 17:40
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at a window of Ecuadorian Embassy in central London. (Sang Tan, AP)

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at a window of Ecuadorian Embassy in central London. (Sang Tan, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

London - Nine people who put up bail for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, including two members of the British aristocracy and a Nobel Prize winner, were ordered to pay £93 000 on Monday after Assange took refuge in Ecuador's embassy.

The guarantors - who include Nobel prize-winning biologist John Sulston - are liable for part of the £140 000 pound bail fee they pledged, Westminster Magistrate's Court ruled.

They were given until 6 November to pay up.

Assange, whose whistleblowing website angered the United States by releasing thousands of US diplomatic cables, was arrested in December 2010 on an extradition warrant from Sweden where he is wanted for questioning over allegations of rape and sexual assault made by two women.

He denies wrongdoing and says he fears that if he is extradited to Sweden he could be transferred to the United States where he could face criminal charges punishable by death.

The 41-year-old Australian broke the conditions of his bail when he entered the Ecuadorean embassy in June shortly after running out of legal options to avoid being sent to Sweden. He was later granted diplomatic asylum by Ecuador.

"Having seen and heard from the sureties, I cannot avoid taking some account of their integrity," Judge Howard Riddle said of the nine guarantors.

"I accept that they trusted Mr Assange to surrender himself as required. I accept that they followed the proceedings and made necessary arrangements to remain in contact with him," he said.

"However, they failed in their basic duty, to ensure his surrender. They must have understood the risk and the concerns of the courts.

No warning

"Both this court and the High Court assessed that there were substantial grounds to believe the defendant would abscond, and that the risk could only be met by stringent conditions including the sureties."

Vaughan Smith - one of the nine, who housed Assange for 13 months after his arrest - argued for the entire group in court last week. He had said it should pay no money at all because the case had dragged on for much longer than expected and Assange had not warned the group's members before entering the embassy.

Each guarantor must now pay between £3 500 and £15 000 pounds, having originally pledged between £5 000 and £20 000 pounds.

Three submitted details of their financial means, which were taken into consideration by the court.

"Nobody wants to lose £12 000 pounds and though my family may now live less comfortably, at least we will be able to live with ourselves," Smith told Reuters afterwards.

"We believe that we have done the right thing and have no regrets for having supported Julian Assange."

Read more on:    wikileaks  |  julian assange  |  uk  |  online security
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Joburg hot spots for cocktails, craft beer, tapas and wine!

It’s the season to be jolly – so we’ve rounded up some new Joburg hot spots!

 
 

I love summer.24

Christmas lingerie to make this festive season the best one ever!
13 things you might not know about Disneyland
The craziest deaths of 2014
How to make this a sensual, sexy summer!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

HOUSES FOR SALE IN Paarl

Houses R 2 690 000

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

There is so much going on around you and inside your head. You may want to take your ideas to the next level. Romance may be...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.