Vilified Assange may not get fair hearing, says friend

LONDON, June 22: Julian Assange has been demonized and may not have fair access to justice, one of his British backers said yesterday, defending the WikiLeaks founder’s decision to jump bail and hole up in the Ecuadorean embassy in London. Vaughan Smith, who hosted Assange at his country mansion for a year while the Australian battled to avoid extradition to Sweden, was given no warning of Assange’s dramatic plan even though he stands to lose 31,500 dollars in bail money. (agencies)