UK: Court adjourns Assange hearing as serving of new US indictment delayed

Dozens of Julian Assange supporters gathered outside Westminster Magistrates' Court in London on Monday as the court adjourned proceedings after it turned out the US prosecution team had failed to formally serve its new indictment. Assange appeared in court via video conference from Belmarsh Prison for the first time in months, but his appearance was delayed after the prison was reportedly unaware that the Australian was set to participate. The hearing was subsequently adjourned after it emerged that the US had not formally submitted its new indictment against Assange, which was made public in June and contains no new charges, with the prosecution saying they were unable to say when it would be. «We were all in a state of confusion, we didn't really know what was going on. It suddenly appeared that the prison were not aware that he was meant to be appearing via videolink, which is a bizarre claim because they have had this date for a long time,» explained Assange supporter Ellie who had attended the court session. She added that she «did ask Mr. Fitzgerald, Julian's lawyer, what he thought was going on and he was quite relaxed and he said he thought it was just a mix-up.» «The Crown Prosecution Service is getting very mixed messages from the US prosecutors. They are behind schedule. They have not presented to the court or to the defence, the new requests for Julian's extradition and on exactly what charge,» said a member of the Julian Assange defence committee. «It shows, and we're now at the end of July, it's showing that their case is falling apart by the day. Any wise judicial or legal practitioner would know that this trial should not go ahead of the 7th and should be abandoned by the CPS [Crown Prosecution Service] and the US prosecutors,» he added. Assange is set to face a full extradition hearing on September 7.
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