The confusion about what charges exactly have lead to the extradition hearings against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange reached a fever pitch this week with Michael Moore and Keith Olbermann both coming under fire for perpetuating the much bandied about myth that only a “broken condom” is responsible for the “sex by surprise” charges that Assange faces in Sweden. Now, the Guardian is detailing the charges for the first time, after receiving “unauthorised access” to police files.
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.
Miss A told a friend it was “the worst sex ever” and, “Not only had it been the world’s worst screw, it had also been violent.”
After a night of sex with another woman, in which Assange allegedly resisted wearing a condom again, Miss W alleges:
[S]he had gone to buy breakfast before getting back into bed and falling asleep beside Assange. She had awoken to find him having sex with her, she said, but when she asked whether he was wearing a condom he said no. “According to her statement, she said: ‘You better not have HIV’ and he answered: ‘Of course not,’ ” but “she couldn’t be bothered to tell him one more time because she had been going on about the condom all night. She had never had unprotected sex before.”
Assange has not been formally charged with a crime, but expect the stories of his accusers to spread wildly, hopefully correcting the public record, not in reference to his guilt or innocence, but at least when it comes to the accusations he’s facing.
That said, online daters beware.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on December 18, 2010