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Wednesday
Dec152010

Lawyers: Julian Assange's Address Should Be Private

Photo Courtesy - LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images(LONDON) -- He may have leaked more than a quarter-million classified U.S. diplomatic cables, but there's one thing Wikileaks founder Julian Assange's lawyers don't want anyone to know about him: where he'll stay if he's makes bond.

Lawyers for the man dedicated to sharing information argued at a bond hearing Tuesday that a possible location for Assange's stay while he's out on bond in England should not be made public due to privacy concerns, a rationale that drew chuckles from those in attendance. The home, belonging to friend and supporter Vaughn Smith, is reportedly a sprawling 10-bedroom estate. The motion for privacy was denied.

Assange is currently being held in a London prison on sexual assault charges, including rape, originating out of Sweden. On Tuesday, a judge granted him $315,000 bond, but Swedish prosecutors appealed the decision. A decision on the appeal is expected by Thursday.

Assange's lawyer, Mark Stephens, said Tuesday his client was "very pleased" with the London court's ruling, but said before the appeal was announced that raising the $315,000 cash bond would take "an inordinately long period of time."

"Meanwhile, an innocent man remains in jail...in Dickensian conditions," Stephens said.

If he is able to post the bond, Assange must surrender his passport and stay in the United Kingdom where he plans to stay with a friend, the London judge ruled Tuesday. He will have an electronic tag to verify that he is at that address overnight and must daily report to police.

Several supporters have offered to assist in paying Assange's bail, including documentary filmmaker Michael Moore who pledged $20,000.

Assange has been held in solitary confinement -- for his own protection, the jail said. His lawyers said he is being held in a wing normally reserved for convicted criminals, cut off from other prisoners and is only allowed a half hour a day outside the cell.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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