WikiLeaks Founder Accused of Rape

Julian Assange, the editor in chief of whistleblower Web site WikiLeaks, has been accused of committing rape in Sweden, a charge that the former computer hacker believes is the handiwork of powerful people or organizations that want to silence him.

A colleague of Assange, Kristinn Hrafnsson, said the 39-year-old Internet activist was in Sweden and would promptly go to police to face the accusations and clear his name. Hrafnsson said the charge against Assange may be part of a bigger plan to destroy the credibility of WikiLeaks. “There are powerful organizations who want to do harm to WikiLeaks,” she said.

Swedish prosecutor’s office spokesman Karin Rosander said Assange, aside from being accused of rape, is also wanted for assaulting another woman. Prosecutor Maria Haljebo Kjellstrand said the alleged rape was committed in the municipality of Enkoping.

The charges against Assange come after WikiLeaks drew the ire of the U.S. military and security officials for releasing a large cache of secret documents regarding the Afghan war. Last week, Assange announced that some 15,000 more documents could be leaked by WikiLeaks in about two weeks.