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Sweden: 'Evidence is not strong enough' for an indictment - prosecutors on Assange rape case

1 19.11.2019 Инфо

W/S Deputy Chief Prosecutor Eva-Marie Persson taking to podium, Stockholm
W/S Eva-Marie Persson at a press conference
SOT, Eva-Marie Persson, Deputy Chief Prosecutor (Swedish): "During the course of the investigation it has been shown that the parties have given consistent statements in some regards, whereas in other regards they have completely different opinions."
M/S Camera operator *CUTAWAY*
SOT, Eva-Marie Persson, Deputy Chief Prosecutor (Swedish): "After the additional investigation and the investigative steps taken over the summer and autumn, it is now clear that the oral testimony in support of statements by the injured party has weakened. This primarily is because a long time has passed since the events took place. Memories fade, for natural reasons."
M/S Journalists typing *CUTAWAY*
SOT, Eva-Marie Persson, Deputy Chief Prosecutor (Swedish): "It is my assessment that all investigative steps that can be taken have also been taken, however, the evidentiary basis is such that the corroborating evidence is not sufficient to - in the way that is prescribed by the Supreme Court - deem that the description of the alleged criminal act can be proven."
M/S Journalists *CUTAWAY*
SOT, Eva-Marie Persson, Deputy Chief Prosecutor (Swedish): "After conducting a comprehensive assessment of what has emerged during the course of the preliminary investigation, I made the assessment that the evidence is not strong enough to form the basis for filing an indictment."
M/S Camera operators *CUTAWAY*
SOT, Eva-Marie Persson, Deputy Chief Prosecutor (Swedish): "In such a situation the preliminary investigation should be discontinued, and that is also what has happened today."
W/S Eva-Marie Persson leaving
SCRIPT
Swedish prosecutors said they would drop an investigation into rape allegations made against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange after a review of the evidence. The announcement was made during a press conference in Stockholm on Tuesday.
"After conducting a comprehensive assessment of what has emerged during the course of the preliminary investigation, I made the assessment that the evidence is not strong enough to form the basis for filing an indictment," Deputy Chief Prosecutor Eva-Marie Persson said.
"Testimony in support of statements by the injured party has weakened. This is primarily because a long time has passed since the events took place," she continued. "Memories fade, for natural reasons."
Assange has repeatedly denied the allegations against him made in 2010, and spent seven years inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London to avoid extradition to Sweden due to fears of being subsequently extradited to the United States where he faces conspiracy and espionage charges related to the publication of classified military and diplomatic documents in 2010.
Police arrested the WikiLeaks founder at the embassy in April, and he was convicted from last month and sentenced to 50 weeks in jail in the UK for breaching his bail conditions. Assange still faces extradition to the United States, the hearing for which will take place at Belmarsh Court in February.