The WikiLeaks co-founder is expected to finalize his release at a court in the Northern Mariana Islands, a US territory in the Pacific A Julian Assange supporter protests in front of Westminster Magistrates Court, while calling for his release from Belmarsh Prison, on April 14, 2024 in London, England. © Peter Nicholls/Getty Images

WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange has been freed from Belmarsh maximum security prison in the UK as part of a plea deal with the US Justice Department. The activist spent five years behind bars in London while fighting extradition to the US, where he is accused of illegally obtaining and disclosing national security materials which shed light on alleged American war crimes.

According to the US Department of Justice, Assange has agreed to plead guilty at a court in the Northern Mariana Islands, a US territory in the Pacific. He is expected to be sentenced to around five years, equating to the time he has already served in Britain, while the extradition request is likely to be dropped. After the court proceedings, Assange is expected to travel to Australia, his country of citizenship.

  • 25 June 2024

    06:35 GMT

    The VJT199 charter flight believed to be carrying Assange has landed in Bangkok, Thailand, according to the Flightradar24 website. It is unclear whether the aircraft is refueling after flying from the UK, or how the activist will continue his journey to the Northern Mariana Islands, some 5,000km to the east. (RT)