The United States will present a case against Julian Assange in an extradition trial

LONDON: The United States government and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will face off on Monday in a London courthouse, a decade after WikiLeaks infuriated US officials by publishing a trove of classified military. A judge at Woolwich Crown Court will begin hearing arguments from lawyers for US, who want to try Assange on espionage charges that carry a maximum sentence of 175 years in prison.

The extradition hearing follows years of subterfuges, diplomatic disputes and legal dramas that have led the 48-year-old Australian to fame as an international secret through exile within the Ecuadorian embassy in London to imprisonment in a United Kingdom prison.

Assange has been indicted in the US on 18 charges over the publication of classified documents. say he conspired with US army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning to hack into a computer and release hundreds of of secret diplomatic and military files on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. US authorities say WikiLeaks ’activities put American lives in danger. Assange argues he was acting as a journalist and says the leaked documents exposed US military wrongdoing.