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Just What Did Assange Allegedly Do? Details Of Accusations Emerge

Here's how Britain's The Independentdescribes what a London court was told today about WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and the alleged sex crimes that Swedish authorities are investigating and want to question him about:

"Gemma Lindfield, for the Swedish authorities, ... said the first complainant, Miss A, said she was victim of 'unlawful coercion' on the night of August 14 in Stockholm. ... Assange is accused of using his body weight to hold her down in a sexual manner.

"The second charge alleged Assange 'sexually molested' Miss A by having sex with her without a condom when it was her 'express wish' one should be used. The third charge claimed Assange 'deliberately molested' Miss A on August 18.

"The fourth charge accused Assange of having sex with a second woman, Miss W, on August 17 without a condom while she was asleep."

The Guardian has a similar account here.

Assange has denied the accusations, which he has said are politically motivated and aimed at destroying WikiLeaks. His site has most recently revealed thousands of previously secret U.S. diplomatic cables.

As we reported earlier, Assange was arrested in London today by authorities in connection with Sweden's international arrest warrant for him. He's being held without bail. On its Twitter page, WikiLeaks says it was "Let down by the UK justice system's bizarre decision to refuse bail to Julian Assange. But #cablegate releases continue as planned." So, watch for more from the trove of diplomatic messages.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Mark Memmott is NPR's supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he's a resource for NPR's journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization's standards.