The Justice Department announced criminal charges against WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange on Thursday, accusing him of conspiring with Chelsea Manning to hack into a classified U.S. government computer. "The charge relates to Assange's alleged role in one of the largest compromises of classified information in the history of the United States," the DOJ says. Assange was arrested Thursday at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, where he had been living for nearly seven years.


Rules of criminal or civil procedure govern the conduct of a lawsuit in the common law adversarial system of dispute resolution. Procedural rules are constrained and informed by separate statutory laws, case laws, and constitutional provisions that define the rights of the parties to a lawsuit (see especially due process), though the rules generally reflect this legal context on their face. The details of the procedure differ greatly from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, and often from court to court even within the same jurisdiction. These rules of the particular procedures are very important for litigants to know, because the litigants are the ones who dictate the timing and progression of the lawsuit. Litigants are responsible to obtain the suited result and the timing of reaching this result. Failure to comply with the procedural rules may result in serious limitations that can affect the ability of one to present claims or defenses at any subsequent trial, or even promote the dismissal of the lawsuit altogether.
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