Judge weighs request to unseal Assange charges

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — An apparent criminal complaint against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is the subject of a federal court hearing in Virginia.

Free-press advocates want a judge to unseal the complaint after prosecutors in an unrelated case inadvertently mentioned charges against Assange.

A hearing is scheduled for Tuesday morning in Alexandria.

Prosecutors oppose the motion. They argue the public has no right to know whether a person has been charged until there has been an arrest. The government also says the accidental reference to charges against Assange does not mean he has actually been charged.

The Associated Press and other news outlets have reported that Assange is indeed facing unspecified charges under seal.

Assange has been staying in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London under a grant of asylum since 2012.