Prosecutors Mistakenly Reveal Criminal Charges Against Julian Assange

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WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who was behind a massive dump of classified USA documents in 2010, has been charged in the United States, WikiLeaks said Thursday.

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While the DOJ has been investigating Assange for eight years, the prosecutors have yet to agree on the precise charges the 47-year-old might face.

Dwyer wrote that "due to the sophistication of the defendant and the publicity surrounding the case, no other procedure is likely to keep confidential the fact that Assange has been charged". "That was not the intended name for this filing", the spokesman, Joshua Stueve, said in an email.

It is not clear what charges Mr Assange faces, because they were not disclosed.

As CBS News correspondent Jonathan Vigliotti reports, Assange remains holed up in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London - in large part out of fear that if he leaves he'll be extradited to the US, and this latest revelation could be an indication that his fear is well founded. After all, the Obama DOJ concluded, such a prosecution would pose a severe threat to press freedom because there would be no way to prosecute Assange for publishing classified documents without also prosecuting the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Guardian and others for doing exactly the same thing.

Assange's lawyer in the US told the Times the charges were "troubling".

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The filing is unrelated to Assange; documents in a case pertaining to sex crimes charges against someone named Seitu Sulayman Kokayi were recently unsealed and appeared to accidentally mention Assange.

Prosecuting someone for publishing truthful information would set a awful and risky precedent.

Mr Assange and his supporters have periodically said U.S. authorities had filed secret criminal charges against him, an assertion against which some United States officials pushed back until recently.

Facing extradition from Britain to Sweden to be questioned in a sexual molestation case, Assange six years ago took refuge in Ecuador's London embassy, where initially he was treated as a welcome guest. But whether to charge the WikiLeaks founder was hardly a foregone conclusion.

Assange first grabbed worldwide attention when WikiLeaks began releasing troves of classified documents about a decade ago.

WikiLeaks has attracted US attention since 2010, when it published thousands of military and State Department documents from Army Pvt.

An apparent cut-and-paste error has revealed that American prosecutors may have already filed criminal charges against cupboard-dwelling WikiLeaks fugitive Julian Assange.

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