WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is set to testify in a case in which a Spanish security firm has been accused of spying on him at the direction of the US government.
As the founder of WikiLeaks fights extradition to the United States, he is also fighting another battle, in which the CIA stands accused of spying on him while he was seeking asylum in London.
According to reports, video recordings have been released that confirm Julian Assange was under surveillance while he lived inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London. This included a number of microphones hidden throughout the embassy, even in the restroom. And special attention was paid to the time Assange spent with visitors from Russia and the US.
All eyes are now on UC Global, a Spanish firm that is in charge of security at the Ecuadorian Embassy. The firm’s founder, David Morales was arrested earlier this year over accusations that he illegally recorded Assange, and then turned the evidence over to the US government.
Morales was indicted in October by Spain’s National Court, in connection with the case. He was charged with privacy violation, bribery, and money laundering. He has denied any wrongdoing and has since been released pending trial.
According to court documents filed by Spain’s public prosecutor, former employees from UC Global say that Morales made trips at least once a month to the United States where he delivered hard disks containing footage of Assange inside the embassy.
Morales also replaced the security equipment in the building to include microphones in 2017, which just happens to be the same year the Trump Administration began ramping up its case against Assange. Their push for the termination of his asylum status was granted in April when the publisher was arrested and dragged out of the embassy. Assange has been in prison in the UK ever since.
Assange is currently facing more than 175 years in prison in the US on Espionage charges related to WikiLeaks’ publishing of classified documents that revealed the horrific killing of civilians by members of the US Military. Many have raised concerns about the implications such a sentence could carry for the future of publishers and journalists.
A group of more than 60 doctors are also warning that Assange’s mental and physical health has deteriorated so much, that he may not even live to see his extradition hearing in February.
As for the case against UC Global, Assange is set to testify by video conference on December 20. And his lawyers are hoping that if they can prove the CIA violated Assange’s rights, then maybe it could help prevent his extradition to the US.