Report: Justice Department Considering Plea Deal for Assange

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The Justice Department is considering whether to offer WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange the opportunity to plead guilty to a reduced charge of mishandling classified information, The Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday, citing people familiar with the matter.

The report said DOJ officials and Assange’s legal team have already had preliminary talks on what a plea deal might look like. However, Barry Pollack, a lawyer for Assange, said he has been given no indication that the department will take a deal.

“It is inappropriate for Mr. Assange’s lawyers to comment while his case is before the UK High Court other than to say we have been given no indication that the Department of Justice intends to resolve the case and the United States is continuing with as much determination as ever to seek his extradition on all 18 charges, exposing him to 175 years in prison,” Pollack said in a statement.