10 Days in Sweden: The Full Allegations Against Julian Assange
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Documents seen by the Guardian reveal for the first time the full details of the allegations of rape and sexual assault that have led to extradition hearings against the WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange.
The case against Assange, which has been the subject of intense speculation and dispute in mainstream media and on the internet, is laid out in police material held in Stockholm to which the Guardian received unauthorised access.
Assange, who was released on bail on Thursday, denies the Swedish allegations and has not formally been charged with any offence. The two Swedish women behind the charges have been accused by his supporters of making malicious complaints or being "honeytraps" in a wider conspiracy to discredit him.
Assange's UK lawyer, Mark Stephens, attributed the allegations to "dark forces", saying: "The honeytrap has been sprung ... After what we've seen so far you can reasonably conclude this is part of a greater plan." The journalist John Pilger dismissed the case as a "political stunt" and in an interview with ABC news, Assange said Swedish prosecutors were withholding evidence which suggested he had been "set up."
However, unredacted statements held by prosecutors in Stockholm, along with interviews with some of the central characters, shed fresh light on the hotly disputed sequence of events that has become the centre of a global storm.
Stephens has repeatedly complained that Assange has not been allowed to see the full allegations against him, but it is understood his Swedish defence team have copies of all the documents seen by the Guardian. He maintains that other potentially exculpatory evidence has not been made available to his team and may not have been seen by the Guardian.
The allegations centre on a 10-day period after Assange flew into Stockholm on Wednesday 11 August. One of the women, named in court as Miss A, told police that she had arranged Assange's trip to Sweden, and let him stay in her flat because she was due to be away. She returned early, on Friday 13 August, after which the pair went for a meal and then returned to her flat.
Her account to police, which Assange disputes, stated that he began stroking her leg as they drank tea, before he pulled off her clothes and snapped a necklace that she was wearing. According to her statement she "tried to put on some articles of clothing as it was going too quickly and uncomfortably but Assange ripped them off again". Miss A told police that she didn't want to go any further "but that it was too late to stop Assange as she had gone along with it so far", and so she allowed him to undress her.
According to the statement, Miss A then realised he was trying to have unprotected sex with her. She told police that she had tried a number of times to reach for a condom but Assange had stopped her by holding her arms and pinning her legs. The statement records Miss A describing how Assange then released her arms and agreed to use a condom, but she told the police that at some stage Assange had "done something" with the condom that resulted in it becoming ripped, and ejaculated without withdrawing.
When he was later interviewed by police in Stockholm, Assange agreed that he had had sex with Miss A but said he did not tear the condom, and that he was not aware that it had been torn. He told police that he had continued to sleep in Miss A's bed for the following week and she had never mentioned a torn condom.