Assange ‘offered win-win deal by Trump to avoid extradition

Court drawing of Julian Assange
The Canary

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was offered a “win-win” deal by Donald Trump to avoid extradition by revealing the source of the hacking of Democratic party emails, a court has heard.

Trump approval

Barrister Jennifer Robinson said she was asked to attend the meeting by her client, Assange, with Republican congressman Dana Rohrabacher and Trump associate Charles Johnson at the Ecuadorian embassy on 15 August 2017.

In a statement read at 49-year-old Assange’s extradition hearing at the Old Bailey on Friday, she said the pair “wanted us to believe they were acting on behalf of the president”.

She added:

They stated that President Trump was aware of and had approved of them coming to meet with Mr Assange to discuss a proposal – and that they would have an audience with the president to discuss the matter on their return to Washington DC.

Congressman Rohrabacher explained he wanted to resolve the ongoing speculation about Russian involvement in the Democratic National Committee leaks to WikiLeaks, which were published by WikiLeaks and other media organisations in 2016.

He stated that he regarded the ongoing speculation as damaging to US-Russian relations, that it was reviving Cold War politics, and that it would be in the best interests of the US if the matter could be resolved.

He and Mr Johnson also explained that any information from Mr Assange about the source of the DNC leaks would be of interest, value and assistance to Mr Trump.


Robinson said Rohrabacher claimed he had come to London to talk to Assange about “what might be necessary to get him out” and presented him with a “win-win situation” which would allow him to leave the embassy and “get on with his life” without fear of extradition to the US.

She said:

The proposal put forward by Congressman Rohrabacher was that Mr Assange identify the source for the 2016 election publications in return for some kind of pardon, assurance or agreement which would both benefit President Trump politically and prevent US indictment and extradition.

The meeting was concluded on the basis that Congressman Rohrabacher would return to have a direct conversation with President Trump about exactly what would be done to prevent Mr Assange’s indictment and extradition.

Source protected

The barrister added that Assange did not provide any source of information.

James Lewis QC, for the US government, said:

The position of the government is we don’t contest these things were said. We obviously do not accept the truth of what was said by others.

Assange is fighting extradition to the US following the leaks of hundreds of thousands of classified documents in 2010 and 2011. He is facing 18 charges – including plotting to hack computers and conspiring to obtain and disclose national defence information. The Canary has extensively covered Assange’s fight against extradition.

We need your help ...

The coronavirus pandemic is changing our world, fast. And we will do all we can to keep bringing you news and analysis throughout. But we are worried about maintaining enough income to pay our staff and minimal overheads.

Now, more than ever, we need a vibrant, independent media that holds the government to account and calls it out when it puts vested economic interests above human lives. We need a media that shows solidarity with the people most affected by the crisis – and one that can help to build a world based on collaboration and compassion.

We have been fighting against an establishment that is trying to shut us down. And like most independent media, we don’t have the deep pockets of investors to call on to bail us out.

Can you help by chipping in a few pounds each month?

The Canary Support us
  • Show Comments
    1. “The position of the government is we don’t contest these things were said. We obviously do not accept the truth of what was said by others.”

      And there we have America in a nutshell.

      ‘We’re right. You’re wrong. If you don’t like it; we’ll kill you (too many known example to require referencing) ; we’ll threaten to kill you’re children (John Bolton to the then head of the OPCW); we’ll destroy your country both physically and economically (again no references required).’

    2. Julian Assange should be given a medal for his work not chased down and extradited for no reason other than telling the world the truth about US war crimes. He is a Journalist and a publisher and his work is mainly of a political nature, therefore he should never be put on trial and or extradited as it is against UK law. That’s why they changed the charges that’s why they claim he is a hacker and an espionage agent. His trial so far is nothing short of a sham and I am ashamed to be British if this is what we call a fair trial and justice. Joseph Stalin couldn’t have done a better job of a show trial.

      The way the MSM have treated both Assange and his trial shows the power of these people who they really work for and how they can do whatever they like to you me and anyone that gets in their way.

    3. The Guardian enhanced their credentials considerably via Wikileaks and Assange. Their spineless ‘journalists’ should be all over this.

      Absolutely, this is about ‘freedom of the press,’ and absolutely, we do not have one of these in the UK!

    Leave a Reply

    Join the conversation

    Please read our comment moderation policy here.