Moreno’s remarks come after prosecutors acknowledged to a judge last month that they erred when they mistakenly referenced criminal charges against Assange in an unrelated case, yet insisted the need for secrecy in the case still remains.
The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press argued that the inadvertent disclosure by prosecutors about charges against the WikiLeaks founder obliterates the usual need for secrecy.
Typically, criminal charges remain under seal until a defendant has been arrested to prevent a target from fleeing arrest or destroying evidence ahead of prosecution.
In this case, the free-press advocates pointed out that Assange has been holed up since 2012 under a grant of asylum at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London for fear of prosecution in the U.S. Now that any doubt about those charges has been removed, there no longer exists a reason to keep the charges against him secret, lawyer Katie Townsend argued.
However, prosecutor Gordon Kromberg said no precedent exists for a judge to require disclosure of criminal charges before a defendant’s arrest.