On Saturday, the actress, model, and animal rights activist visited the WikiLeaks founder at the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where Assange has lived for the past four years under the protection of political asylum. According to the Telegraph, Anderson entered the building carrying bags from the restaurant chain Pret a Manger.
Anderson told the U.K.’s Press Association she brought Assange “a nice vegan lunch and some vegan snacks.” She then joked, “He said I tortured him with bringing him vegan food.”
Why would a former Baywatch star and Playboy model visit the man behind the radical transparency publication? Because she’s a fan, of course, and she wanted to make sure he was faring well in the embassy.
“I really believe in him and think he’s a good person, and I’m concerned about his health, his family, and I just hope that by some miracle he’s set free,” Anderson told the Telegraph.
Assange has lived at the Ecuadorian embassy since August 2012, when he requested asylum to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he was wanted for questioning regarding allegations of sexual misconduct. Assange’s legal team worried that travel to Sweden would result in his extradition to the United States, where he has not been charged with any crime but remains a figure of interest due to WikiLeaks’ past and ongoing publication of leaked documents, including many related to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.
A day after Anderson’s visit, WikiLeaks began tweeting cryptic messages, igniting incorrect rumors that Anderson had poisoned Assange. A few hours later, WikiLeaks said on Twitter that Assange’s internet connection had been “intentionally severed by a state party.”
Anderson’s visit and the alleged state-sponsored cyberattack appear unrelated.