"Julian Is Free": Assange Back Home in Australia After Taking U.S. Plea Deal in "Espionage" Case

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Julian Assange has landed in Australia a free man, reuniting with his family Wednesday after pleading guilty to one charge of violating the U.S. Espionage Act as part of a deal with the Justice Department. The WikiLeaks publisher entered his plea on the Pacific island of Saipan, part of the U.S. territory of the Northern Mariana Islands, which lets him avoid further prison time following five years behind bars in the U.K. awaiting possible extradition to the U.S. He had been facing a possible 175 years in U.S. prison if convicted on charges related to his publication of classified documents in 2010 that revealed U.S. war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan. “This case is an attack on journalism, it’s an attack on the public’s right to know, and it should never have been brought,” the WikiLeaks founder’s wife, Stella Assange, said at a press conference Wednesday. “Julian should never have spent a single day in prison. But today we celebrate, because today Julian is free.” We also play comments from members of Assange’s legal team, Jennifer Robinson and Barry Pollack, who said the use of the World War I-era Espionage Act to go after a publisher put press freedoms at grave risk.

Full article on the Democracy Now website at http://www.democracynow.org/2024/6/26/julian_assange_lands_in_australia

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