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Reporting from London —
Julian Assange, founder of the controversial WikiLeaks website, was arrested here Tuesday morning at the request of Swedish authorities who want to question him about allegations of sexual assault, Scotland Yard said.
Assange, 39, voluntarily surrendered to police and was put under arrest, police said. He is expected to appear in a London court later Tuesday.
Sweden has asked that Assange be extradited so that it can investigate allegations by two women who had sexual encounters with him in that country earlier this year. Swedish prosecutors say the encounters may have involved "unlawful coercion" and even rape, but Assange has insisted that the liaisons were consensual.
Assange's British lawyer said his client is looking forward to fighting the allegations. "It's about time we got to the end of the day and we got some truth, justice and rule of law," Mark Stephens told the BBC. "Julian Assange has been the one in hot pursuit to vindicate himself to clear his good name." A WikiLeaks spokesman today said that the arrest will not stop the organization releasing more secret documents.