WikiLeaks founder Assange questioned by Swedish police

Police and prosecutor are keeping mum on how the investigation is progressing

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has now been questioned by Swedish police regarding a molestation charge directed at him, his lawyer said Tuesday.

"I can confirm that my client has been questioned. My client says he hasn't committed a crime, but I can't go into any detail," Leif Silbersky told Swedish paper Aftonbladet.

The prosecutor and the police are remaining tight-lipped, and won't comment on the investigation at this point.

In Sweden, the term molestation covers many different offenses. If Assange is found guilty he faces a fine or up to one year in prison. A fine is more common, according to chief prosecutor Eva Finné.

However, another case involving Assange is nearing a decision, the Swedish Prosecution Authority said Tuesday. In that case, the prosecution authority issued a warrant for Assange's arrest on a charge of rape, and later withdrew the warrant. On Friday, the lawyer representing the woman whose allegations gave rise to the charge asked the prosecution authority to re-examine the decision to drop the rape charge. The authority expects to announce the result of that review in the next couple of days.

The Swedish Parliamentary Ombudsman is also waiting for that announcement before deciding if it should take a closer look at how the case was handled by the duty prosecutor who issued the warrant for Assange's arrest.

Send news tips and comments to mikael_ricknas@idg.com

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Mikael Ricknäs

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