The US Justice Department is preparing charges against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, whose website published thousands of classified US government documents.
US federal prosecutors inadvertently disclosed the existence of a sealed indictment in a federal court filing in an unrelated case, WikiLeaks said Thursday.
The court document, which prosecutors say was filed by mistake, asks a judge to seal documents in a criminal case unrelated to Assange.
US officials had no comment on the disclosure and the exact nature of the charges against Assange was not immediately known.
Prosecutors sought to keep the charges confidential until after Assange’s arrest, saying the move was essential to ensure he did not evade or avoid arrest and extradition in the case.
US officials have previously acknowledged that federal prosecutors based in Alexandria, Virginia, have been conducting a lengthy criminal investigation into WikiLeaks and its…