Investigators in the United States are believed to have failed to find evidence to support a prosecution of Julian Assange, the head of WikiLeaks, for encouraging the leak of secret government documents.
Furious officials and congressmen have called for Mr Assange to be tried for “inducing” the disclosure of diplomatic cables by Bradley Manning, a US army private. Pte Manning, 23, is being held at a military base in Virginia on suspicion of leaking the official secrets, which have been reported by The Daily Telegraph.
Politicians including Mike Huckabee, a former Arkansas governor and prospective candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, have called for Mr Assange to be executed if convicted. Yet lawyers for the FBI and the US department of justice have not found evidence that Mr Assange told Pte Manning to hand WikiLeaks the files, according to reports.
They may be forced to try to prosecute the WikiLeaks chief for conspiracy, a case that would be harder to prove and at odds with their statements that Mr Assange took advantage of the young soldier.
It is thought the investigators found no evidence linking Mr Assange directly with Pte Manning. He has maintained that he had no communication with the soldier.
Mr Assange is in London fighting extradition to Sweden over unrelated allegations of sexual crimes, which he denies.