WikiLeaks founder Assange's bail guarantors ordered to pay out
LONDON (REUTERS) - Nine people who put up bail for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, including two members of the British aristocracy and a Nobel Prize winner, were ordered to pay 93,000 pounds (S$180,000) on Monday after Assange took refuge in Ecuador's embassy.
The guarantors - who include Nobel prize-winning biologist John Sulston - are liable for part of the 140,000 pound bail fee they pledged, Westminster Magistrate's Court ruled. They were given until Nov. 6 to pay up.
The 41-year-old Australian broke the conditions of his bail when he entered the Ecuadorean embassy in June shortly after running out of legal options to avoid being sent to Sweden. He was later granted diplomatic asylum by Ecuador.
"Having seen and heard from the sureties, I cannot avoid taking some account of their integrity," Judge Howard Riddle said of the nine guarantors. "I accept that they trusted Mr Assange to surrender himself as required. I accept that they followed the proceedings and made necessary arrangements to remain in contact with him," he said.