Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has been denied bail by a London court and will remain in jail. The decision comes two days after the British court turned down the request to have Assange extradited to the U.S. due to mental health concerns.
Assange, who has been indicted on 17 espionage charges by U.S. prosecutors, has been held at London’s Belmarsh prison from April 2019, when he was evicted from the Ecuadorian embassy. He is serving a 50-week jail sentence for breaching his bail conditions in 2012.
District Judge Vanessa Baraitser said on Monday at London’s Old Bailey court that Assange’s clinical depression could be compounded and he could commit suicide if extradited stateside. The U.S. will appeal the decision.
Aside from the espionage charges, Assange has also been indicted in the U.S. on one charge of computer misuse over WikiLeaks’ publication of leaked military and diplomatic documents detailing alleged U.S. military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2010 and 2011. The charges could lead to a maximum sentence of 175 years in prison. The case is now likely to go to the U.K. supreme court.
Assange previously faced rape charges in Sweden in 2010. He took refuge at the Ecuadorian embassy in London in 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden over those rape allegations, which were eventually dropped in November 2019.