Updated at 6:10 p.m. on December 14.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this report gave an incorrect bail amount.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange made bail today with the financial help of a new ally—documentary filmmaker Michael Moore, who is siding with the joyful crowds of self-proclaimed advocates of free speech that were lined up outside the London courthouse.
Moore posted $20,000 to help Assange after his bail was set at about $380,000, and strict conditions were set requiring him to surrender his passport, abide by a curfew, and wear an electronic tag. According to a lawyer for Assange, the bulk of the money -- some $315,000 -- must be paid in cash.
The ordeal isn’t over yet—Swedish prosecutors filed an appeal and Assange will remain in jail until it's heard by London's high court within 48 hours, according to the Guardian.
Moore, who is best known for his fierce criticism of the Iraq war, said in a statement to the court that he supports Assange as a "pioneer of free speech, transparent government, and the digital revolution in journalism.”
The director said that “exposing the follies of government and business offers the greater society a chance to protect itself from these follies. Some aren't just follies. Some are crimes. What do we do with someone who informs the ... free people in a democracy ... that a crime has been committed? Do we arrest him? Do we try to shut his mouth? Do we hound him, threaten him, track him down, and hunt him as if he is the criminal?"
"That is no crime. That is an act of patriotism," Moore said in the statement.
Although Moore’s defense centered on WikiLeaks, Assange isn’t being held on crimes related to his website. Assange is wanted for questioning in Sweden for allegations of rape, sexual molestation, and unlawful coercion. His lawyers said they will contest Sweden’s attempt to extradite him from London for fear he could be turned over to the United States.
Attorney General Eric Holder has said that Assange's website puts American lives at risk. The site's latest bombshell release of 250,000 State Department cables, combined with the site's earlier releases of hundreds of thousands of documents relating to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have irked the Obama administration.
The U.S. is engaged in what Holder calls an “ongoing criminal investigation" into the site, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who was largely responsible for managing the fallout after the release of the diplomatic cables, has pledged to hold responsible anyone involved in the leak. Holder has said he authorized “significant” actions in the investigation, though he did not clarify where he stands when it comes to bringing criminal charges against the site’s founder.
"National security of the United States has been put at risk," Holder said last week. "The lives of people who work for the American people have been put at risk. The American people themselves have been put at risk by these actions that I believe are arrogant, misguided, and ultimately not helpful in any way. We are doing everything that we can."