London (CNN)Julian Assange has been sentenced to just under a year in a UK prison on Wednesday after he was found guilty of violating his bail conditions when he entered Ecuador’s London embassy to avoid extradition to Sweden in 2012.

“You had a choice and the course of action you chose was to commit an offense,” Judge Deborah Taylor said. “You’ve not surrendered willingly … you would not have come voluntarily before the court,” she added, before handing down an “imprisonment of 50 weeks.” Assange was wanted in Sweden for questioning over sexual assault and rape allegations. He faces a separate hearing on possible extradition to the United States over a computer hacking conspiracy charge on Thursday. Julian Assange's legal battles have only just begunJulian Assange's legal battles have only just begunJulian Assange's legal battles have only just begunCharges relating to his bail were formally laid at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on April 11, hours after the 47-year-old’s nearly seven-year sanctuary within Ecuador’s central London embassy came to an abrupt and dramatic end. The WikiLeaks founder appeared at Southwark Crown Court on Wednesday wearing jeans, a T-shirt and a blazer, with a clipped beard and freshly-cut hair.Read MoreThe session started later than expected and there were audio issues in the court room. Assange looked stoic and merely nodded at protestors who waved at him and flashed peace signs.At the start of the hearing, the judge asked Assange if he understood he was being committed for sentencing, to which he replied, “I understand that I am committed,” adding “I don’t know the details.”An artist's impression of Julian Assange in a London court on Wednesday.An artist's impression of Julian Assange in a London court on Wednesday.An artist’s impression of Julian Assange in a London court on Wednesday.In mitigation for the Australian computer programmer, defense lawyer Mark Summers said his client had been living “in overwhelming fear” of potential rendition from Sweden to the US over WikiLeaks disclosures. “As these threats rained down on him from America, these threats dominated everything as far as the proceedings. They dominated his thoughts,” Summers said before making reference to Guantanamo Bay prison, strip searches and torture.Summers then read a letter from Assange to the court.”I apologize … to those who feel I disrespected them. This is not what I wanted or intended,” Assange stated in the prepared letter. “I did what I thought at the time was the best and perhaps only thing I could have done.”Supporters cried out “shame on you” as the judge delivered her verdict.WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange arrives at court in London on Wednesday.WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange arrives at court in London on Wednesday.WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange arrives at court in London on Wednesday.US extradition hearingSeparately on Thursday, the WikiLeaks founder will face the first of multiple extradition hearings over a criminal charge in the US. He has been charged with helping former Army intelligence specialist Chelsea Manning obtain access to US Defense Department computers in 2010 in order to reveal secret government documents. The charge of one count of conspiracy to commit computer intrusion was kept under seal for over a year until his arrest in London three weeks ago. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange speaks to the media from the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London in May 2017. Assange, founder of the website WikiLeaks, has been a key figure in major leaks of classified government documents, cables and videos.WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange speaks to the media from the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London in May 2017. Assange, founder of the website WikiLeaks, has been a key figure in major leaks of classified government documents, cables and videos. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeWikiLeaks founder Julian Assange speaks to the media from the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London in May 2017. Assange, founder of the website WikiLeaks, has been a key figure in major leaks of classified government documents, cables and videos.Hide Caption 1 of 22Assange holds a copy of The Guardian newspaper in London on July 26, 2010, a day after WikiLeaks posted more than 90,000 classified documents related to the Afghanistan War.Assange holds a copy of The Guardian newspaper in London on July 26, 2010, a day after WikiLeaks posted more than 90,000 classified documents related to the Afghanistan War. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange holds a copy of The Guardian newspaper in London on July 26, 2010, a day after WikiLeaks posted more than 90,000 classified documents related to the Afghanistan War.Hide Caption 2 of 22Assange attends a seminar at the Swedish Trade Union Confederation in Stockholm on August 14, 2010. Six days later, Swedish prosecutors issued a warrant for his arrest based on allegations of sexual assault from two women. Assange has always denied wrongdoing.Assange attends a seminar at the Swedish Trade Union Confederation in Stockholm on August 14, 2010. Six days later, Swedish prosecutors issued a warrant for his arrest based on allegations of sexual assault from two women. Assange has always denied wrongdoing. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange attends a seminar at the Swedish Trade Union Confederation in Stockholm on August 14, 2010. Six days later, Swedish prosecutors issued a warrant for his arrest based on allegations of sexual assault from two women. Assange has always denied wrongdoing.Hide Caption 3 of 22Assange, in London, displays a page from WikiLeaks on October 23, 2010. The day before, WikiLeaks released approximately 400,000 classified military documents from the Iraq War.Assange, in London, displays a page from WikiLeaks on October 23, 2010. The day before, WikiLeaks released approximately 400,000 classified military documents from the Iraq War. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange, in London, displays a page from WikiLeaks on October 23, 2010. The day before, WikiLeaks released approximately 400,000 classified military documents from the Iraq War.Hide Caption 4 of 22Assange and his bodyguards are seen after a news conference in Geneva, Switzerland, in November 2010. It was the month WikiLeaks began releasing diplomatic cables from US embassies.Assange and his bodyguards are seen after a news conference in Geneva, Switzerland, in November 2010. It was the month WikiLeaks began releasing diplomatic cables from US embassies. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange and his bodyguards are seen after a news conference in Geneva, Switzerland, in November 2010. It was the month WikiLeaks began releasing diplomatic cables from US embassies.Hide Caption 5 of 22Assange sits behind the tinted window of a police vehicle in London on December 14, 2010. Assange had turned himself in to London authorities on December 7 and was released on bail and put on house arrest on December 16. In February 2011, a judge ruled in support of Assange's extradition to Sweden. Assange's lawyers filed an appeal.Assange sits behind the tinted window of a police vehicle in London on December 14, 2010. Assange had turned himself in to London authorities on December 7 and was released on bail and put on house arrest on December 16. In February 2011, a judge ruled in support of Assange's extradition to Sweden. Assange's lawyers filed an appeal. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange sits behind the tinted window of a police vehicle in London on December 14, 2010. Assange had turned himself in to London authorities on December 7 and was released on bail and put on house arrest on December 16. In February 2011, a judge ruled in support of Assange’s extradition to Sweden. Assange’s lawyers filed an appeal.Hide Caption 6 of 22In October 2011, a month after WikiLeaks released more than 250,000 US diplomatic cables, Assange speaks to demonstrators from the steps of St. Paul's Cathedral in London.In October 2011, a month after WikiLeaks released more than 250,000 US diplomatic cables, Assange speaks to demonstrators from the steps of St. Paul's Cathedral in London. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeIn October 2011, a month after WikiLeaks released more than 250,000 US diplomatic cables, Assange speaks to demonstrators from the steps of St. Paul’s Cathedral in London.Hide Caption 7 of 22Assange leaves the High Court in London in December 2011. He was taking his extradition case to the British Supreme Court.Assange leaves the High Court in London in December 2011. He was taking his extradition case to the British Supreme Court. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange leaves the High Court in London in December 2011. He was taking his extradition case to the British Supreme Court.Hide Caption 8 of 22Assange leaves the Supreme Court in February 2012. In May of that year, the court denied his appeal against extradition.Assange leaves the Supreme Court in February 2012. In May of that year, the court denied his appeal against extradition. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange leaves the Supreme Court in February 2012. In May of that year, the court denied his appeal against extradition.Hide Caption 9 of 22Assange addresses the media and his supporters from the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London on August 19, 2012. A few days earlier, Ecuador announced that it had granted asylum to Assange. In his public address, Assange demanded that the United States drop its "witch hunt" against WikiLeaks.Assange addresses the media and his supporters from the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London on August 19, 2012. A few days earlier, Ecuador announced that it had granted asylum to Assange. In his public address, Assange demanded that the United States drop its "witch hunt" against WikiLeaks. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange addresses the media and his supporters from the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London on August 19, 2012. A few days earlier, Ecuador announced that it had granted asylum to Assange. In his public address, Assange demanded that the United States drop its “witch hunt” against WikiLeaks.Hide Caption 10 of 22Assange speaks from a window of the Ecuadorian Embassy in December 2012.Assange speaks from a window of the Ecuadorian Embassy in December 2012. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange speaks from a window of the Ecuadorian Embassy in December 2012.Hide Caption 11 of 22Assange addresses the Oxford Union Society from the Ecuadorian Embassy in January 2013.Assange addresses the Oxford Union Society from the Ecuadorian Embassy in January 2013. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange addresses the Oxford Union Society from the Ecuadorian Embassy in January 2013.Hide Caption 12 of 22Assange appears with Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino on the balcony of the embassy in June 2013.Assange appears with Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino on the balcony of the embassy in June 2013. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange appears with Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino on the balcony of the embassy in June 2013.Hide Caption 13 of 22Assange speaks during a panel discussion at the South By Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas, in March 2014.Assange speaks during a panel discussion at the South By Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas, in March 2014. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange speaks during a panel discussion at the South By Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas, in March 2014.Hide Caption 14 of 22Assange attends a news conference inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London in August 2014.Assange attends a news conference inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London in August 2014. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange attends a news conference inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London in August 2014.Hide Caption 15 of 22Assange is seen on a video screen in March 2015, during an event on the sideline of a United Nations Human Rights Council session.Assange is seen on a video screen in March 2015, during an event on the sideline of a United Nations Human Rights Council session. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange is seen on a video screen in March 2015, during an event on the sideline of a United Nations Human Rights Council session.Hide Caption 16 of 22Assange, on the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy, holds up a United Nations report in February 2016. The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention said that Assange was being arbitrarily detained by the governments of Sweden and the United Kingdom.Assange, on the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy, holds up a United Nations report in February 2016. The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention said that Assange was being arbitrarily detained by the governments of Sweden and the United Kingdom. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange, on the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy, holds up a United Nations report in February 2016. The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention said that Assange was being arbitrarily detained by the governments of Sweden and the United Kingdom.Hide Caption 17 of 22Assange speaks to the media in May 2017, after Swedish prosecutors had dropped their investigation of rape allegations against Assange. But Assange acknowledged he was unlikely to walk out of the embassy any time soon. "The UK has said it will arrest me regardless," he said. "The US CIA Director (Mike) Pompeo and the US attorney general have said that I and other WikiLeaks staff have no ... First Amendment rights, that my arrest and the arrest (of) my other staff is a priority. That is not acceptable."Assange speaks to the media in May 2017, after Swedish prosecutors had dropped their investigation of rape allegations against Assange. But Assange acknowledged he was unlikely to walk out of the embassy any time soon. "The UK has said it will arrest me regardless," he said. "The US CIA Director (Mike) Pompeo and the US attorney general have said that I and other WikiLeaks staff have no ... First Amendment rights, that my arrest and the arrest (of) my other staff is a priority. That is not acceptable." Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange speaks to the media in May 2017, after Swedish prosecutors had dropped their investigation of rape allegations against Assange. But Assange acknowledged he was unlikely to walk out of the embassy any time soon. “The UK has said it will arrest me regardless,” he said. “The US CIA Director (Mike) Pompeo and the US attorney general have said that I and other WikiLeaks staff have no … First Amendment rights, that my arrest and the arrest (of) my other staff is a priority. That is not acceptable.”Hide Caption 18 of 22Assange was seen for the first time in months during a hearing via teleconference in Quito, Ecuador, in October 2018. The hearing was then postponed due to translation difficulties.Assange was seen for the first time in months during a hearing via teleconference in Quito, Ecuador, in October 2018. The hearing was then postponed due to translation difficulties. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange was seen for the first time in months during a hearing via teleconference in Quito, Ecuador, in October 2018. The hearing was then postponed due to translation difficulties.Hide Caption 19 of 22A van displays images of Assange and Chelsea Manning, the former Army intelligence analyst who supplied thousands of classified documents to WikiLeaks, outside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London on Friday, April 5. A senior Ecuadorian official said no decision has been made to expel Assange from the embassy. According to WikiLeaks tweets, sources had told the organization that Assange could be kicked out of the embassy within "hours to days."A van displays images of Assange and Chelsea Manning, the former Army intelligence analyst who supplied thousands of classified documents to WikiLeaks, outside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London on Friday, April 5. A senior Ecuadorian official said no decision has been made to expel Assange from the embassy. According to WikiLeaks tweets, sources had told the organization that Assange could be kicked out of the embassy within "hours to days." Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeA van displays images of Assange and Chelsea Manning, the former Army intelligence analyst who supplied thousands of classified documents to WikiLeaks, outside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London on Friday, April 5. A senior Ecuadorian official said no decision has been made to expel Assange from the embassy. According to WikiLeaks tweets, sources had told the organization that Assange could be kicked out of the embassy within “hours to days.”Hide Caption 20 of 22A screen grab from video footage shows the dramatic moment when Assange was <a href="https://edition.cnn.com/2019/04/11/uk/julian-assange-arrested-gbr-intl/index.html" target="_blank">hauled out of the Ecuadorian Embassy by police</a> on Thursday, April 11. Assange was arrested for "failing to surrender to the court" over a warrant issued in 2012. Officers made the initial move to detain Arrange after Ecuador withdrew his asylum and invited authorities into the embassy, citing the Australian's bad behavior.A screen grab from video footage shows the dramatic moment when Assange was <a href="https://edition.cnn.com/2019/04/11/uk/julian-assange-arrested-gbr-intl/index.html" target="_blank">hauled out of the Ecuadorian Embassy by police</a> on Thursday, April 11. Assange was arrested for "failing to surrender to the court" over a warrant issued in 2012. Officers made the initial move to detain Arrange after Ecuador withdrew his asylum and invited authorities into the embassy, citing the Australian's bad behavior. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeA screen grab from video footage shows the dramatic moment when Assange was hauled out of the Ecuadorian Embassy by police on Thursday, April 11. Assange was arrested for “failing to surrender to the court” over a warrant issued in 2012. Officers made the initial move to detain Arrange after Ecuador withdrew his asylum and invited authorities into the embassy, citing the Australian’s bad behavior.Hide Caption 21 of 22Assange gestures from a police vehicle on his arrival at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London on April 11. US authorities have also issued an extradition warrant for Assange. The US Department of Justice confirmed Assange has been indicted on conspiracy with Manning.Assange gestures from a police vehicle on his arrival at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London on April 11. US authorities have also issued an extradition warrant for Assange. The US Department of Justice confirmed Assange has been indicted on conspiracy with Manning. Photos: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeAssange gestures from a police vehicle on his arrival at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London on April 11. US authorities have also issued an extradition warrant for Assange. The US Department of Justice confirmed Assange has been indicted on conspiracy with Manning.Hide Caption 22 of 2201 Julian Assange 0519201702 assange 101003 assange 101004 assange 101005 assange 101006 assange 1010Julian Assange FILE october 2011Julian Assange FILE december 2011Julian Assange FILE february 2012Julian Assange FILE august 2012Julian Assange FILE december 2012Julian Assange FILE january 2013 RESTRICTED12 assange 1010RESTRICTED julian assange 07052015bjulian assange 7052015Julian Assange FILE March 2015Julian Assange FILE february 2016Julian Assange FILE may 201701 Julian Assange hearing Ecuador 102501 Julian Assange signage London 040504 assange arrest 041108 assange arrest 0411Under UK law, the US government has 65 days from arrest — so until June 15 — to provide full extradition papers to a British district judge. Jennifer Robinson, one of the lawyers on Assange’s legal team told CNN on Saturday: “It is a matter of international concern that a publisher is being held in a high-security prison facing extradition to the US for his work that has won journalism awards the world over. We are very concerned about his health.”Robinson added: “He is grateful for the solidarity shown around the world.” In the weeks since his arrest, Assange has been held on remand at HMP Belmarsh in Thamesmead, southeast London. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was being held in London's high-security Belmarsh prison.WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was being held in London's high-security Belmarsh prison.WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was being held in London’s high-security Belmarsh prison.One of the most secure facilities in England and Wales, Belmarsh prison has the capacity to hold over 900 inmates and is well known for once housing infamous terror suspects Abu Hamza al-Masri and Anjem Choudary within its high-security unit. Andy Keen-Downs, chief executive of Pact, a rehabilitation charity that provides family services at prisons across the country, said Belmarsh receives a mixture of inmates who are allocated single or shared cells. “In the middle of the prison is the area built for high-security prisoners,” Keen-Downs explained. “Conditions are very basic. Prison staff work hard to keep prisoners safe, but like most prisons there are occasions when there could be violence. It could be a very intimidating atmosphere,” he continued.

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