The Re-Opening of the Swedish Assange Case Should Be Welcomed 339


That the Swedish investigation into the rape allegation against Julian Assange is being re-opened is something that ought to be welcomed. The alternative would be for this accusation to hang unresolved over Julian’s head forever. The Swedish prosecutors now need finally, as my father used to say, either to piss or get off the pot. They need to decide whether there is sufficient evidence to charge or not.

There is no reason for delay. The Swedish police have had seven years to investigate this case and all the evidence has been gathered and all statements taken – the last being the interview of Julian Assange in the Ecuadorean Embassy in 2017. Hopefully to review the evidence and decide whether to charge will not now be a lengthy procedure. It is worth noting, contrary to much misreporting, Julian Assange has never been charged with anything in Sweden.

In the event that Sweden does wish to try to extradite, that should take precedence over the US request. There are three good reasons for this. Firstly, rape is by far the more serious alleged offence. Secondly, the Swedes entered the process many years before the Americans. Thirdly, the European Arrest Warrant is a major multilateral arrangement that is much more important than the discredited bilateral extradition treaty with the USA.

Julian only entered Ecuadorean political asylum because he feared onward extradition to the USA, not extradition to Sweden.

None of the above detracts from the many problems with the Swedish prosecution, Sweden’s Chief Prosecutor decided no offence had been committed and the case should be closed after the initial investigation, before another Prosecutor decided to reopen the case, as is possible under the Swedish system. That prosecutor, Marianne Ny, herself decided to close the case in 2013, and was instructed not to by the British Crown Prosecution Service, in a series of emails which the CPS attempted to hide and some of which had been destroyed. Ms Ny also admitted to destroying communications from the FBI, and ultimately admitted to having destroyed the entire case file.

That is before you get to the problems with the Swedish judicial system, where rape trials hear all evidence entirely in secret, there is no jury, and two of the three judges are political party appointees.

Plainly, as always in cases involving Assange, there are plenty of reasons to be concerned about the impartiality of state justice. The United Nations has already condemned the disproportionate sentence given to Assange for breaking bail conditions and his being held in a maximum security prison. It has gone virtually unremarked by the MSM that the Ecuadorean government has, entirely illegally, handed all of Julian’s possessions over to the USA.

Plainly this is a long and difficult fight to save Julian from entrapment and permanent imprisonment. But the Swedish calumny not being simply left hanging is a necessary step in that fight.

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339 thoughts on “The Re-Opening of the Swedish Assange Case Should Be Welcomed

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  • SA

    In the good old days, a suspect would have had the benefit of the doubt and refrain from comments before the case was heard whilst sub judice. Now all the world and its mother discuss all the details and minutiae of this case. Would anyone in thier right mind really believe that Assange would have a fair , unbiased trial?

    • Courtenay Barnett

      SA,

      It is not so much about the breach of the sub judice rule; it is the overall compromise of justice in the prosecution of Assange – be that emanating from vassal Sweden or supplicant UK.

      In the ‘good ol’ days’ a case like this ought not to have been ‘persecuted’.

    • Sharp Ears

      Do you think Theresa May is ever awakened by nightmares arising from all the human rights abuses committed during her time as Home Secretary and now as Prime Minister?

      May the good Lord preserve us.

      PS Trust everybody who has the What’s App app has updated it as instructed. Those pesky Israelis at NSO. ‘We only created it ..etc’

    • John2o2o

      it is heartening news, but unfortunately Tulsi is not widely believed to have a chance of becoming the Democratic Party nominee. Their favorite is Biden, who is quite another matter.

        • Tatyana

          It is the same Biden, who will be the next president after Trump. It is his corrupt ties in the Ukrainian had to investigate Rudolph Giuliani, who was suddenly (but expectedly) refused the visit and meeting the new Ukrainian president Zelensky, who is supposedly a protege of Kolomoisky, who became an olygarch during the privatization. What’s interesting, double citizenship is not allowed for local headmen, but Kolomoisky says it is not applicable to his case, because he has no double citizenship. He has triple – Ukraine, Israeli and Cyprus. Smart *ss

          • pretzelattack

            some centrist (as they call themselves) dem will possibly win if they sabotage the moderate leftists like gabbard and sanders, but i doubt it will be biden. he will flame out just as in his other presidential campaigns.

          • Johny Conspiranoid

            We are being linned up for a Democratic nomination battle between Biden and either Tulsi Gabbard or AOC. Bidden will loose and one of the other two will be Obama 2, ie carry on regime changing. They are phoney radicals. Tulsi Gabbard is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

    • Tatyana

      I’m not that optimistic.
      If the american people decide to make us all a favour to elect Mrs. Gabbard for her to free Mr. Assange and Mr. Snowden 🙂
      It would be great, but we all understand there must be other criteria for choosing a president 🙂 And also, not all of the promises come to life after the inauguration.

      Well, let’s suppose it happens, Mrs. Gabbard elected and Assange and Snowden are pardoned. Then, what’s next? Will she develop and bring to life some whistleblower protection programme?

  • certa certi

    So, why doesn’t Australia charge Assange with contempt of court and seek extradition?

    In 2014 he published a super suppression order. It contained a long list of SE Asian leaders allegedly bribed by an Aust Gov entity. Publication was gagged on national security grounds. The list included two Indonesian Presidents, one of whom was serving and had cancelled all cooperation with Australia. In the interim he compelled Canberra to negotiate a ‘code of conduct’ hoping to severely restrict Aust intelligence operations in his country. His FM had promised to ‘cook Australia slowly.’ The publication of the gag order was embarrassing and career threatening, and with just a hint of more dirt to come should he not desist immediately, ensured he so desisted. The Oz media crowed ‘Australia Wins Spy War with Indonesia.’ The AFP, with considerable resources, failed to find and charge the ‘leaker.’ Local journos had used the Assange publication to direct readers to the ‘leaked’ document. Compare with the recent and ongoing case of Cardinal Pell in which journos are currently being threatened with prosecution for contempt. When the AFP fails to find and charge a ‘leaker’ it’s usually a sign the ‘leak’ was authorised. Perhaps Canberra owes Assange a very big thankyou.

    https://wikileaks.org/aus-suppression-order/WikiLeaks-Australian-suppression-order.pdf

    • John2o2o

      Yes, Greenwald is a complex figure. He’s often an insightful commentator in my opinion, but sometimes comes out with material such as this. He accuses Julian of exploiting the murder of Seth Rich. I think that’s very unfair.

      • Northern

        I like Greenwald, but it’s becoming increasingly difficult to ignore the points where he does toe the official line. I’m still undecided whether he’s playing some sort of long game gate keeper role at someone’s behest, or whether he’s just out to save his own skin at any particular moment. Either way I seem to alternate between admiration of his honesty and incredulity at his acceptance of certain aspects of a narrative as a verbatim.

        • Goose

          The Intercept has become very much like a MSM site. If you read the btl comments, readers are literally baffled by recent journalistic hires there and some of the establishment propaganda-like pieces they’re running these days.

          G. Greenwald has also removed the entire Snowden searchable archived stuff they were hosting.

    • pete

      SE asks if Glen could have done what Julian did, which seems a fair question. My probably incomplete understanding is that Snowden had a good grasp of the kind of random surveillance the US security agency was doing, in handing over the material he had gathered Snowden has partly revealed the extent of the security forces surveillance capabilities. The material was filtered by the reporters dealing with it in order to minimise the potential damage to particular individuals to keep them from harm. Presumably the rest of the material is being held somewhere.
      What Glen says is that Julian was less concerned with any damage to individuals by the release of the material he had gotten access to. This seems to ignore that fact that the material was filtered by news agencies, effectively redacting names/details at that stage. What the release of the Collateral Murder recording was the existence of a war crime for which no one had answered for.
      Access to the Wikileaks website was blocked for some time in the UK, at least until mirror sites were set up, I have no idea if the Wikileaks website could have been accessed from elsewhere or if it was. In addition the password to a whole cache of material was leaked by a journalist, effectively putting it in the public domain. Did Julian want this?
      The bottom line is was anybody actually harmed by the release of the material at that stage, was it anything other that a public embarrassment for the security/diplomatic services and the Clintons.
      Please correct me if my understanding is wrong in any particular fact.

  • michael norton

    The U.K. government has awarded Julian Assange the longest jail term, it thought it could get away with, an incredible long term, for not turning up for a bail hearing.
    This would seem to be the only actual “crime” he has been accussed of, yet.
    It seems to me, Julian is a political detainee.
    This is against natural justice.

    • MJ

      The chap who skipped bail when his girlfriend died in a speedboat accident only got an additional six months added to his sentence for skipping bail.

      • Kempe

        He skipped bail for a matter of weeks and handed himself in rather than having to be dragged away kicking and screaming after seven years cowering in an embassy.

        • pretzelattack

          was he going to be rendered to the u.s. for a life sentence or death penalty, too? i know you wouldn’t ignore the context just to advance a dishonest argument.

          • Stonky

            No. Neither of them were…

            Weren’t you the guy ridiculing the idea that Assange was going to be dragged out of the Embassy, just a day or two before he was dragged out of the Embassy? Or am I confusing you with your pal Charles?

    • Charles Bostock

      Norton

      The “UK government” has not awarded Assange anything. The court gave the award. In liberal democracies there is a difference.

      • Borncynical

        I take it you would doubt that it’s possible that the (Honourable?) judge in question was under ‘nudge, nudge, wink, wink’ instructions to give the longest possible sentence to ‘buy’ more time to sort out the extradition processes involving the US and, possibly, Sweden. It’s also buying more time for the Swedish authorities to be persuaded by other parties that they wish to proceed with the ‘rape’ investigation. Let’s face it, our Government seems incapable of sorting anything out in good time so a few extra months is always desirable. If it involves compromising the judicial process then so what? As has been said many times now, it is the UK Government which sees itself as being is well and truly “above the law”.

        • Tom Welsh

          I am quite certain that no British judge ever meets Sir Humphrey for “a quiet drink” at their club. And Sir Humphrey never mentions discreetly how hard it has become to find suitable candidates for peerages, vice-chancellorships, Masterships of Oxbridge colleges and other juicy plums. Or – on an entirely different topic, of course – how very bad it would be for the UK’s standing in the world if certain behaviour were seen to go without condign punishment.

  • Baalbek

    How do we know the Swedish prosecutors are acting in good faith and that their actions are not just another thread designed to ensnare Assange and prevent his ever seeing the light of day?

    It’s difficult to have any trust in a corrupt system of persecution and control that has proven itself utterly ruthless and willing to torture and also to reach across international borders in pursuit of their prey. Not a hopeful situation.

      • pretzelattack

        oh, probably indications that the brits asked them to continue the investigation after they decided to close it (for the second time; bringing in a new prosecutor to reopen it the first time is another clue); and they complied like good poodles. both sweden and the uk deserve a treat and a belly rub from uncle sam..

        • Charles Bostock

          With great respect, you’ll have to do better than that if you wish to demonstrate tht the Swedish prosecutors are not acting in good faith. “Indications” and “clues” don’t quite cut it because they’re entirely subjective.

      • Sheepshagger

        It’s called abuse of process, bureaucratic fascism, dark arts – whatever you want.
        I might add that their practitioners have always had plenty of chumps like you, Charles, to do their bidding.

        • Charles Bostock

          That’s rather substance-free (but of course insult-rich) don’t you think, Mr Sheepshagger? With respect, it is insufficient to convince me that the Swedish prosecutors are bnot acting in good faith. Please try again because I should love to believe you!

          • Borncynical

            @CB,
            I take it you have read the John Pilger link posted by Sharp Ears at 12.48? That should give you some idea as to why many of us are sceptical about what’s motivating the Swedish authorities.

  • Garth Carthy

    @Bostock
    “The “UK government” has not awarded Assange anything. The court gave the award. In liberal democracies there is a difference.”

    You think the court is never influenced by the UK government? Hmmm.

    • Charles Bostock

      What I think is immaterial. The court gave the sentence, not the government. Norton should be more precise when he posts.

      • Ken Kenn

        Yes.

        The Court gave him a 50 sentence for skipping bail on a charge that was dropped but is in the throes of being revived now he’s residing at Her Majesty’s pleasure.

        As far as i can see he’s in jail for skipping bail – that rhymes.

        He’s not in jail for embarrassing the US or an alleged sex offence.

        Not yet anyway – that comes later.

        Just skipping bail.
        Is he dangerous or something?

        If not why is he in with the Terrorist?

        The UK is just ‘ holding ‘ him until the address of where the parcel should be delivered is decided.

        Is your tax up to date on your car?

        Evenin’ all.

      • Ray Raven

        Oh yes, Vostock; you are definitely here for an ego trip.
        Reading most of the other commentators’ resonpses, you and you commentary is viewed as an annoying mosquitio or a fly; an unworthy contributor to say the least.
        Thus as you are viewed as an unworthy contributor, you conyinual presence here is an act of futility and ego; to somehow try and prove that you matter.
        You don’t matter.

    • Borncynical

      Sorry, Garth. I just responded similarly to @CB, before I read your reaction. Gone are the days when the integrity and independence of the judicial system were never in doubt.

    • michael norton

      it wasn’t the court that ordered the police to drag Julian Assange out of the Equador embassy, it was the U.K. Government.

  • ADKC

    It is obvious that the UK plans to extradite Julian Assange to Sweden and that Sweden will then hand Assange over to the US.

    I’m afraid that Craig Murray recent articles on Julian Assange have been misjudged and are helping the UK in this process. I don’t believe that this is Craig’s intention; he appears attracted to “legal” argument and doesn’t always see political side of things.

    Craig believes that Assange will be vindicated of the Swedish charges but doesn’t see that this slur (of sexual assault/rape) has already achieved it’s objective (just like it has with Alex Salmond) and can be used to achieve much more. Craig seems to be under the mistaken impression that an innocent person could never be found “guilty”.

    The position should be NO to extradition to the US and NO to the extradition to Sweden and call out the obvious manouvre involved in the Sweden extradition farce. John Pilger’s tweets on the subject set out the arguments to advance.

    • michael norton

      If “stuff” comes to light, let’s guess from Wikileaks, that Ecuador and America and Sweden and the U.K. have hatched a plan
      for the destruction of Julian Assange, this would be quite enlightening.
      Somebody must have told the British police to go into the Embassy of Ecuador and drag Julian Assange out, somebody must have alerted the press to be there, for added effect.
      This is a bit like the siege of Cliff Richard, it is all planned.
      Somebody is putting pressure on the Swedish Rape victim.
      Somebody is putting pressure on the Swedish government.
      Somebody is putting pressure on the government of Ecuador.

      This is not merely a bail jumping,
      this is political.

      • Tatyana

        I’m sorry to mention this intimate detail. As long as I know the complaint was about not using a condom. So, it is much exaggeration to write “rape victim”.
        Or, was it sarcasm, Michael?

        • Borncynical

          Tatyana,

          Both you and Michael are correct. The allegation is as you describe. However, for reasons I am unclear about, the investigating authorities (police or prosecuting lawyers? I’m not sure who) chose to label the alleged offence as ‘rape’. It may be that the investigators were deliberately being disingenuous about what actually happened; but I have also read that failure to use a condom without the agreement of the woman – even if the ‘act’ itself is consensual – is classified as ‘rape’ under Swedish law. I do not know if this is true or not.

          It’s rather complicated but apparently the main concern of both (consensual) female partners was that, by not using a condom, JA may have risked transmitting a STD (sexually transmitted disease) to them and they simply wanted a judicial order issued requiring him to undergo a medical test to establish whether he was an infection risk or not.

          This is very misleading to people in the UK (and no doubt elsewhere) who may not be following the finer details of the case and assume that JA may have been guilty of forcing himself on the alleged victim(s). Politicians and the mainstream media in the UK do not help matters by using the term rape without clarification of what was actually alleged. The truth is that they are too lazy to even bother looking into the background to the case themselves in order to understand the nuances before undertaking their character assassination of JA.

          So Michael is technically right in alluding to the “Swedish rape victim” although it was not ‘rape’ as you and I would understand it and even the alleged victims have themselves made this very clear. Much has also been reported about the possible motives of the women involved in accusing JA of wrongdoing but it is all too complicated to summarise here!

          Hope this helps.

          J.

          • Tatyana

            Thanks Borncynical for clarifying.

            There is a common phrase ‘unprotected sex’, and I think you agree that using 14 letters instead of 4 is not the unbearable overload.
            Especially for a professional journalist. Indeed, in case he cares of good journalism more than of clickbaits.

          • Borncynical

            Tatyana (@5.40)

            Indeed. The number of genuinely professional investigative journalists based in the UK can be counted in single figures and they are all subjected to smears and barred from featuring in mainstream media outlets. On the odd occasion they might, by accident, appear on TV and voice their well-founded opinions (with evidence to back them up) they are shouted down and made out to be treasonous (‘apologist’) conspiracy theorists.

    • Apolonius

      Absolutely agree with you. “Sweden connection” is a transparent ploy to get Assange out of UK, where some old judges can’t be swayed to deliver a man to concentration camp, or worse. Once in Sweden, they will get him very easily, through proven very obedient Swedish Government (to US). UK sentence of 50 weeks is so unproportionately severe just for this purpose : to have Assange in custody all the time while deliberating his betrayal. For Empire, what is important is to have him imprisoned all the time, this makes extradition so much easier.

  • Roderick Russell

    Personally I think Assange should go to the USA if he can get a trial in front of a jury in an open court. As the Trump administration gears up against their perceived enemies (the dodgy dossier etc.), it may be that Mr. Assange’s main enemies will have more to worry about than him.

    Sweden is one of those inverted totalitarian States where there is a lot of bullshit about being a democracy and very little reality to it. Secret trials without a jury in Sweden!! Mr. Assange, in my opinion would be well advised to avoid this.

  • Anon1

    [ MOD: Kindly stay on topic. And kindly stop trolling. ]

    Why does Wikileaks never release any dirt on Israel? I suspect it is because Israel never does anything wrong, but commenters might like to advance their own theories.

    • Anon1

      Assange/Wikileaks is on topic. You’re only afraid a whole stream of anti-Semitic garbage will come out. That’s why anything to do with Israel/Jews has to be so heavily modded on this site.

      • Tony

        There is negligible anti-Jewish comment on this site. That’s because the vast majority of us on here are not anti-Jewish, just as we are not racists. Most of us on here are anti the ultra-right wing Israeli Establishment who currently run Israel. And we have this in common with a huge minority of Jewish Israelis, who are given the disgusting label “self-hating Jews” for their humanity.

        The subject of this topic is the re-opening of the Swedish sexual offences allegations against Julian Assange btw.

        • Tatyana

          Thanks for this, Tony.

          I should add, that some of us on here are personally affected by Israeli state politics, regarding stealing money in Russia and never handing over its citizens to investigators, especially it is easy with the great support of London, Washington and Interpol.

          Nevertheless, being normal humans, we understand the difference between the state politics and ordinary non criminal people.

    • Borncynical

      WikiLeaks would require a source for any ‘dirt on Israel’. They clearly state in their terms of reference that they do not seek out information themselves…they rely on whistleblowers to come to them. If they have not ‘released any dirt on Israel’ it is presumably because no one has approached them with info fitting into this category.

    • ADKC

      You obviously don’t understand what Wikileaks does. Wikileaks publishes troves of leaked confidential documents without censoring or interpretation. Essentially it’s a resource that journalists, researchers, historian’s, etc. can utilise.

      There is plenty of information on Israel on Wikileaks; just go and look for it and make of it what you will.

  • james

    i haven’t read all the comments…

    what are folks thoughts on usa extraditing assange from sweden? it looks fairly straight forward and easy to me.. what will prevent this from happening? thanks for any comments..

    • Tatyana

      I think the USA will extradit him and I don’t know how to prevent it. Actually, it seems likely that they invented the plan with new accusations of which we will know soon. If my guess is right and if they bring it to the public when Assange is already in the US and access to him is restricted, if they do it abruptly, so little can be done I’m afraid.

        • Tatyana

          Jackrabbit, I don’t believe that massive protests could change Mr. Assange’s fate. I can’t remember it ever helped.

          Protests demonstrate people’s opinion, but they can’t force the government’s or court’s decision. They will act according to the set of written rules, aka law.

          Revealing of the plot could help, e.g. compromising letters or phone calls being brought to the public. But as we all see, publishing of the revealing information is exactly what is under attack.

          • OnlyHalfALooney

            More than a million people marched in London to protest Blair’s planned Iraq invasion. Did the UK’s government listen? Did that stop MPs (so-called “representatives of the people”) approving an illegal invasion by 412 to 149 votes?

            All we can do is expose the vicious lies and refuse to play the blame/hate games politicians want us to. Perhaps in the long term this will help.

          • Sharp Ears

            Anyone who thinks that the powers-that-be act according to the law are greatly mistaken.

        • pete

          Re Tatyana/Jackrabbit “..little can be done”/”Massive protests”

          Tatyana might be right, it may require something more that massive protest. I seem to recall protests where millions of people objected in the streets to a war with Iraq: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protests_against_the_Iraq_War
          It turned out to be a futile gesture, the pleas were ignored. It’s probable that a more radical approach is required, for example a focused boycott or symbolic disruptive events, as in the long struggle for female emancipation: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women's_rights
          The difficulty arises that Julian lacks charisma and the morals charges coming from Sweden have blackened his character to the extent that a fair trial seems impossible. It turns out that nobody does character blackening quite as well as the British press, who would have thought that quite as much mileage could have been got out of the presence or absence of a piece of rubber. Isn’t that is what at the heart of the Swedish case?
          Of course we cannot believe that the UK authorities did not influence the legal process. They have invested so much money in keeping tabs on Julian, nor have they hidden this cost, so it isn’t possible that judges could be unaware of the stakes involved and the cost to their careers if they made the ‘wrong’ decision. They don’t have to be told what to do, they know what is required.
          Mass demonstrations in favour of someone who’s character has been so blackened seem unlikely, and as far as boycotts go, who would you boycott? No the only chance I think Julian has is with a lawyer who would have to be as good as Clarence Darrow: https://www.britannica.com/biography/Clarence-Darrow

          • Jackrabbit

            That the government doesn’t listen to the people is MORE reason to protest isn’t it?

            That’s what the Gillets Jeunes Movement is all about.

            And its shameful when “leaders” like Corbyn talk of the Swedish charges as though they have merit, and human rights champions like Craig Murray ignore the obvious ploy behind the getting Assange into Swedish custody – the use of “temporary surrender” by Sweden to send Assange to USA.

            The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

          • pete

            Re Jackrabbit: “That the government doesn’t listen to the people is MORE reason to protest isn’t it?”
            You are probably right, I have let my pessimism colour my view, I am frequently hearkened by the energy, imagination and enthusiasm of young people, I hope they will not be fooled by the lies of the governing class.

      • Jackrabbit

        US Presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard says she would pardon Assange and Snowden. Why have other US Presidential candidates spoken out?

        Let’s talk about whistle-blowers. Is it better to have a mechanism to detect corruption and malefeasance or not? Should the US military and security services personnel be barred from whistle-blowing? Should complaints only be allowed through “official channels” that often act against whistle-blowers?

        What does world without whistle-blowers look like? Merely horrifying? Or, “boot on the neck of humanity for eternity” horrifying?

        • Beth

          If only Jeremy Corbyn would speak out as fully as Tulsi Gabbard does about Assange, ending regime change wars etc. Tulsi should be first female President.

          • Beth

            Afterthought – Why can’t Nicola Sturgeon be more like Tulsi and where is her support for this female candidate ? She was quick enough to fall in behind Hillary ‘ We came, we saw, he died’ Clinton.

          • Robyn

            If only the leaders of Australia’s two major parties, would speak out on Julian’s behalf. Only the leader of the Greens made a statement, but I’d say the impact of that would be zero.

      • Jackrabbit

        What does it mean for us and for our children when Skripals can be disappeared and journalists can be silenced? How does that uphold the Western tradition? How does that make us better than those we are told to hate because they “don’t share our values”?

        • Borncynical

          Jackrabbit,
          I don’t know if you or others on here have seen any of the various witness accounts to the (‘WikiLeaks’/Chelsea Manning) ‘Collateral Murder’ incident, given by US veteran Ethan McCord who was at the scene on the ground that day. Very moving and revealing; you should look him up on YouTube if you haven’t already. I found one of the most powerful things he said was that at one point during his time in Iraq it dawned on him that he had more in common with the Iraqi people (i.e. morally) than with the people who sent him there. Says it all really.

    • Scott

      The links provided earlier to John Pilger’s twitter feed show that high level figures in the Swedish judiciary are also questioning the case against Assange. It would be unusual following Swedish social norms for the “The ex head of the Swedish Bar Association” to question the proceedings against Assange openly, without this opinion being representative of an influential group in the legal profession who agree with her concerns. You could try and second-guess this statement as posturing by Ms Anne Ramberg for personal political gain, but if we go down that road of thinking we will not get anywhere.

      Link to her statement, which also includes a link to the original in Swedish.

      http://theindicter.com/head-of-swedish-bar-association-condemns-the-handling-of-the-assange-case-in-uk-and-sweden-as-deplorable-2/

      @James, it doesn’t really answer your question, but the controversy surrounding the case could act in Assange’s favour, preventing extradition to the US,

      Ramberg’s words on the matter are a good place to finish off:

      “One can only speculate on this. I am of the personal opinion that the Supreme Court would not extradite Assange to the United States…”
      “Let us not forget that whatever we may think of Assange or the deeds he is suspected of, this is about much more. It is about freedom of speech and the rule of law principles. It is ultimately about the right and the moral obligation to expose war crimes. Assange and Wikileaks did it. The revelations about US abuse were necessary and particularly important. “

  • Sharp Ears

    See this from 2017 about CPS papers in Julian’s case being deleted in 2014 when a CPS lawyer, unnamed, retired.

    UK prosecutors admit destroying key emails in Julian Assange case
    Correspondence between CPS and its Swedish counterparts about WikiLeaks founder deleted after lawyer retired in 2014
    https://www.theguardian.com/media/2017/nov/10/uk-prosecutors-admit-destroying-key-emails-from-julian-assange-case

    Which way will Javid jump? Will he roll over to Ms Greasy and the 69 others or stand up for justice for Julian? Don’t hold your breath.
    https://www.theguardian.com/media/2019/may/13/assange-now-faces-two-extradition-requests-what-next

    • OnlyHalfALooney

      Normally, the US charges (“conspiring to hack a password”) against Assange would have expired under the general federal statute of limitations. The US prosecutors are claiming that Assange’s alleged crime falls under the definition of “terrorism”.:

      It appears that the Justice Department is relying on an exception, in Section 2332b of the penal code, that extends the statute of limitations to eight years for “acts of terrorism transcending national boundaries.”

      https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/statute-of-limitations-will-be-hotly-disputed-in-assange-case/

      and

      Normally, the statute of limitations prevents prosecutors from charging people with a crime for actions that took place more than five years ago. However, a hacking provision cited in the indictment — intruding into a government computer to obtain national security secrets — has an eight-year limit. A grand jury returned the indictment of Mr. Assange on March 6, 2018, just before the eighth anniversary of the day that Mr. Assange is accused of entering into a conspiracy with Ms. Manning to violate that law.

      There is an oddity: As part of the USA Patriot Act after the Sept. 11 attacks, Congress added that provision to a list of crimes that get an eight-year limit under a separate law titled “extension of statute of limitation for certain terrorism offenses.” While Mr. Assange’s case involves national security, it is not about terrorism. The “terrorism” heading most likely makes no legal difference, however — just as prosecutors can use the words of the Espionage Act to charge leakers, not just spies.

      https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/11/us/politics/assange-indictment.html

      The Swedish allegations against Assange will expire under the Swedish statute of limitations in August 2020.

      I would expect Javid to surrender Assange to Sweden first because the alleged crimes there will expire relatively soon. The US indictment will not expire, since it was issued before the deadline.

      On the other hand, the US suggestions that Assange’s actions are somehow equivalent to “terrorism” does not bode well.

      I am still afraid that Assange will be bundled off to a US military base after the attorney general has thought up some legal ruse, possibly making use of “anti-terrorist” legislation.

      Since the Blair regime, the UK government seems to have little regard for the rule of law, human rights or even common decency.

      • Sara

        I found the same to be true for my country, Sweden, actually. In reality its not democrazy anymore (if it ever was). This has been uncomfartably appearant ever since they murdered our president Olof Palme in 1986. Since then government and its under departements are acting totally on their own device, with no respect for law and order. This includes the police and the Inmigrations, aspecially.

        I consider my country occupied or hijacked. And yes its sad, because there did for a brief moment at least, exist a period where workers rise into politics, where people were outspoken and engaged, and where most rules were respected. At least I think so.

        Our ancesters fought for that, lives were lost, and now we lost everything they achieved. It does make me sad. I cry for my land and my people, my brave ancestors. We live in a dictature and a police state today. No question about it.

  • michael norton

    A little time ago it was said that Ecuador was intending making Julian Assange a diplomat of Ecuador.
    Apparently the U.K. government claimed if Ecuador made this appointment, the U.K. would refuse to recognise it.

    Did Ecuador make Julian Assange a citizen of Ecuador?

    • OnlyHalfALooney

      Assange was granted Ecuadoran citizenship of Ecuador. But apparently all that has just been forgotten.

  • michael norton

    Mrs. Theresa may was Home Secretary, when all this business with Julian Assange, kicked off.
    She has been Prime minister for a while now.
    She would know the real reasons for the terrible treatments handed out to Julian and what will be his future.
    Yesterday as most Wednesdays, it was Prime minister’s Questions.
    Why are all the 650 members of parliament so craven that they will not ask a question of Theresa, “Is is right the way the government are locking up Julian Assange, on a pretext”

    • frankywiggles

      Anybody who did would just get tossed the standard approved line from May, be hooted and roared at by 99.9% of the other MPs, then get labelled for all time as a total disgrace by the entire media. Corbyn would have done before he became leader but he has a chance now to transform British politics and cannot risk blowing it by taking a stand on issues where he cannot win. It does though say it all about the British Parliament and British democracy that there is virtually nobody else you can think of who would question May’s treatment of JA and point out the grave danger it poses to investigative journalism. As you say there are 650 of them, more than in the Indian parliament, all lauded as independent thinkers working for the public good…..

  • Harry Law

    It would appear that since Julian Assange would almost certainly get the Bradley now Chelsea Manning treatment [as tens of thousands of US inmates do on a regular basis i.e. solitary confinement] a good case could be made out that extradition would breach article 3 of the UK Human Rights Act. 1998.
    Article 3 Prohibition of torture
    No one shall be subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

    The UN special rapporteur on torture has formally accused the US government of cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment towards Bradley Manning, the US soldier who was held in solitary confinement for almost a year on suspicion of being the WikiLeaks source.
    Juan Mendez has completed a 14-month investigation into the treatment of Manning since the soldier’s arrest at a US military base in May 2010. He concludes that the US military was at least culpable of cruel and inhumane treatment in keeping Manning locked up alone for 23 hours a day over an 11-month period in conditions that he also found might have constituted torture. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/mar/12/bradley-manning-cruel-inhuman-treatment-un

  • Sara Hansson

    Only one problem as I see it – Sweden is USA, one of its sub states. So if he go to jail in Sweden or USA its the same for them.

    Maybe the only difference is that jails have higher standards then in USA, and they want maximal suffering from him.

    Believe me, if he is extrated to Sweden, they will put him in jail for minimum 15 years, no rights for him, either in trial or outside.

    And during the first 5-10 years, people will start to forget about him. And a small notice in the newspapers will show ”Assange extrated to USA. On his own demand”. And thats it.

    • Borncynical

      Hi Sara,
      Interesting to read your comments. I just hope the small number of other contributors on here (they know who they are) who think the Swedish authorities are nothing but honourable and humanitarian take note of your comments.

    • Tatyana

      Hello, Sara, thank you for your comments!

      We had a discussion above and I hope you can help. Here is a quote from Borncynical’s :
      ” failure to use a condom without the agreement of the woman – even if the ‘act’ itself is consensual – is classified as ‘rape’ under Swedish law “
      Perhaps you can inform us, is it true ?

      • Borncynical

        Tatyana

        Thanks for raising the question with Sara. I hope she is able to provide an answer because it may be fundamental to us understanding how honest the Swedish authorities are being by referring to the possible offence as ‘rape’.

        Alternatively, it struck me as well that it’s not out of the question that it was possibly a simple translation error early on in the investigations. May be someone in England mistranslated Swedish statements, or the Swedes have used the term ‘rape’ incorrectly when trying to convey in English what Assange was alleged to have done i.e. inappropriate sexual behaviour. It sometimes amazes me how easily misunderstandings can run and run gathering speed all the time before someone bothers to say “Hang on a minute. Is this really correct?” Unfortunately the UK government would be only too happy to sustain a ‘misunderstanding’ of such magnitude and significance.

        • Tatyana

          Look, Borncynical, I studied linguistics as theory of how languages function and how people use natural and machine languages to pass information. Also I learned the theory of translation, how to translate saving the sense and the feelings of the speaker.

          Comparing the reports on Scripal’s case I noticed some oddities. What I mean by oddities is exactly what you describe – something that can be attributed to mistranslation or misunderstanding or low qualification of the writer. Like substituting ‘unprotected sex’ with ‘rape’.

          Oddity 1. choosing the worst possible meaning of the word, most emotional and negative connotation of it, even though it the least accurately reflects the reported fact.
          Oddity 2. reporters pretend to not understand how the word is perceived among their goal auditory.
          Oddity 3. if the piece of information can not be attributed to misunderstanding or mistranslation, then the source is anonymous.
          Maybe I’ll remember more.

          With the ‘rape’ chosen for the UK public it is Oddity 2.

  • Stonky

    I think JA ought to have a strong case against the US extradition case (and possibly even grounds for asylum in the UK) on the basis that he has no chance of a fair trial in the US.

    What chance would you have of a fair trial in a country where a presidential election candidate has observed in public “Can’t we just drone this guy?”

      • Loony

        Ignoring context (as UK law requires) then I think you will find that the words of Ms. Nuland precisely represents the feelings of a majority of European citizenry. Some may wonder why so few European officials represent the views of European people.

        Assange has no more chance of any form of justice in Europe than do any of the other 350 million of so EU citizens.

  • MM

    “A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist.” – Cicero

  • Stonky

    I hope that Craig is working on a piece about the revelations currently being covered elsewhere on the OPCW Final Report on the Douma “Chemical Attack”.

    It is becoming increasingly clear that the Final Report was a lie. The conclusion it presented – that the specialist team who carried out the on-site investigation had concluded that the gas cylinders had been dropped from an aircraft – was precisely the opposite of what the team actually concluded.

    Credit to Peter Hitchens and the Daily Mail for supporting the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media, the source of the revelations. He appears to be quite literally the only UK MSM journalist who is covering the story.

    I am listening with cynical amusement to the Today Programme. The BBC was happy enough to make a front page headline of that Shite Helmet video, and ram it down our throats again and again and again. It was happy enough to make a front page headline of the OPCW Final Report when it was issued. On this new aspect to the story, it has quite literally nothing to say.

    • Borncynical

      Stonky,

      Indeed. I am not holding my breath waiting for anyone in the msm to do a feature on these revelations but someone really does need to do it, such is the significance. The OPCW have now been proved to be the liars (voluntary or coerced) that many of us long suspected they were. As you say, absolutely none of the extensive expert engineering analysis of the gas canister scenario was reflected in the final OPCW report conclusions. You have to wonder where else they have categorically lied or been disingenuous with the truth (Salisbury?), as many of us have often suspected. Someone is pulling their strings. And, through its reported findings and conclusions, the suppressed technical report points, by implication, to the fact that the White Helmets are the liars that has been evident all along. That should (but will it?) destroy the credibility of a lot of people in the public eye.

      J.

      • michael norton

        On 11 April 2019, the Metropolitan Police were invited into the Ecuadorian embassy and arrested Assange in connection with his failure to surrender to the court in June 2012 for extradition to Sweden.
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_Assange#Withdrawal_of_asylum,_arrest,_and_conviction_for_breaching_bail

        So are we to understand that all on their own, the Ecuadorian Embassy communicated with the Met
        and there was no governmental involvement by either Ecuador
        or U.K.

        This was an unprecedented stitch up by governments in cahoots.

        We should be told of our governmental involvement, prior to his imprisonment, step by step.

        • Borncynical

          Indeed, Michael. Depressingly, the western PTB and allies would appear to be completely untouchable even with evidence all around us of deceit, irregularities and war crimes on a monumental scale. What can be done about it? I just wish I knew.

  • michael norton

    ‘A POLITICAL PRISONER’
    https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/9104743/julian-assange-jail-visit-human-rights/

    It is understood jail staff initially insisted on having a guard in the room. But the UN pair told him to stand outside so he could not listen in. They were set to see Assange at the Ecuadorian embassy but his arrest on April 11 ended that plan.

    Mr Melzer said after his meeting: “I will be trying to assess the risks of torture and ill treatment Mr Assange might be exposed to.”

    A spokesman for Melzer — who has also reported on alleged prisoner maltreatment at Guantanamo Bay’s Camp X Ray said: “Just three people were present, Mr Assange, Mr Melzer and an independent medical expert. No guard was within earshot.”

    I would like to know how their discussions went.

      • michael norton

        A lawyer representing Julian Assange in Sweden said they would tell the District Court it could not investigate the prosecutor’s request until they had conferred with their client and learned whether or not he wished to oppose a detention order.

        “Since Julian is in prison in England, it has so far not been possible even to speak to him by telephone,” Per Samuelson said.
        https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-05-21/sweden-requests-julian-assange-detention-over-rape-allegation/11132514
        “The outcome of this process is impossible to predict,” Ms Persson said.

        Citing information from UK authorities, she said Assange would serve 25 weeks of his UK sentence before he could be released.

        A British judge has given the US Government a deadline of June 12 to outline its case against Assange.

        It seems quite amiss that the Swedish brief is not allowed to telephone Julian to discuss, these important matters.

        • michael norton

          Things seemed to have quietened down in Sweden.
          Do we yet know who is the victim of Julian, who will be at the center of this Rape Trial?

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