London: Some of Julian Assange’s most prominent supporters face a GBP 240,000 bill after the WikiLeaks founder breached bail conditions over alleged sex crimes.
Assange recently entered the Ecuadorean embassy in Knightsbridge and requested asylum under the United Nations Human Rights Declaration.
Socialite Jemima Khan, film director Ken Loach and journalist John Pilger all put up thousands of pounds in securities to allow Assange his freedom in December 2010.
Vaughan Smith, who housed the WikiLeaks founder at his 10-bedroom Ellingham Hall for more than a year, said he was worried about losing the money he had put up, The Telegraph reports.
“I was surprised. I hadn't spoken to him for two weeks. If somebody in Britain feels the need to walk into an embassy and claim asylum I think we as a society have to ask ourselves some questions,” Smith told The Evening Standard.
“Julian is a man I've never seen in panic. He is courageous and brave. He believes in what he is doing and he should be credited for that,” Smith said.
“I'm trying not to think about whether I will or will not lose any money. I hope I won't. But first and foremost Julian is a friend,” he added.
Assange is currently holed up at the embassy in talks with his lawyers in a final bid to avoid extradition to Sweden on sex crime allegations.
First Published: Thursday, June 21, 2012, 12:42