Julian Assange to be interviewed by Swedish rape prosecutors
Looks like Ecuador's getting fed up with their gobby broom cupboard squatter
Julian Assange, the broom-cupboard-dweller also trading as Wikileaks, will be interviewed in Ecuador's London embassy by Swedish prosecutors over rape allegations.
The Swedish Prosecution Authority announced earlier today that Assange would be interviewed at the embassy by chief prosecutor Ingrid Isgren and a Swedish police investigator.
Assange has been hiding in the embassy since August 2012 to evade an EU-wide arrest warrant issued by Sweden.
He cannot leave the embassy for fear of arrest and extradition to Sweden, which puts him a step closer to US prosecutors who desperately want hold of him for publishing various classified but humdrum US government documents on Wikileaks.
The interview was originally scheduled for mid-October but was delayed after Assange asked for time to find himself a new lawyer. John Jones QC, Assange's previous lawyer, died in April after leaving a private mental health hospital at 5am and throwing himself under a train. Jones had suffered from depression and the coroner recorded a narrative verdict.
"I welcome the fact that the investigation can now move forward via an interview with the suspect," said Sweden's director of prosecution, Marianne Ny, in a canned quote. Providing Assange gives his consent, the Swedes intend to take a DNA sample from him.
While hiding from justice in the Ecuadorian embassy Assange has: taken to ranting on Twitter at all hours of the day and night; broadcast US officials' leaked emails that definitely weren't handed to him by Russian hackers hoping to influence the US election; had his Wi-Fi turned off by the fed-up Ecuadorians in response; acquired a cat; spun an obscure UN committee into believing his self-imposed exile is some kind of political imprisonment; and cost London taxpayers more than £10m in police overtime, just in case he goes for a night-time stroll.
At the end of October, Assange was refused leave by the Swedes to, er, leave the embassy to attend a funeral without being arrested, on the stated grounds that "the risk of evasion is still substantial". ®
Veteran pisstaker James Cook, tech ed of Business Insider UK, once ordered Assange a takeaway pizza after a bumbling idiot at the Huffington Post accidentally published Assange's UK mobile number. The Twitter thread is worth reading in full if you fancy a giggle.