Sweden officially dropped its rape investigation Friday morning and revoked their arrest warrant against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, though the UK says they're going to arrest him if he leaves the Ecuadorian embassy where he's been holed up.
"Director of Public Prosecution, Ms Marianne Ny, has today decided to discontinue the investigation regarding suspected rape (lesser degree) by Julian Assange," the prosecutor's office said in a statement.
Assange’s defense lawyer, Per Samuelson, has called the prosecution’s decision a “total victory.”
"The preliminary investigation has been dropped and the detention order has been withdrawn, and from Sweden's point of view this is now over," he told Reuters.
The decision marks an end to a seven-year stand-off.
...One of Assange’s lawyers said earlier on Friday that closing the investigation or lifting the European arrest warrant would not necessarily mean he could easily leave for Ecuador, which has granted him asylum.
“The first thing one likely needs to do is seek guarantees from the British authorities that he won’t be seized in some other way,” Melinda Taylor told TT news agency.
Meanwhile, London’s Metropolitan Police have announced that Assange will still be arrested if he leaves the embassy.
“Now that the situation has changed and the Swedish authorities have discontinued their investigation into that matter, Mr Assange remains wanted for a much less serious offence,” it wrote in a statement.
UK states it will arrest Assange regardless & refuses to confirm or deny whether it has already received an extradition request from the US.