Your Man in the Public Gallery: Assange Hearing Day 16 143


On Wednesday the trap sprang shut, as Judge Baraitser insisted the witnesses must finish next week, and that no time would be permitted for preparation of closing arguments, which must be heard the immediate following Monday. This brought the closest the defence have come to a protest, with the defence pointing out they have still not addressed the new superseding indictment, and that the judge refused their request for an adjournment before witness hearings started, to give them time to do so.

Edward Fitzgerald QC for the defence also pointed out that there had been numerous witnesses whose evidence had to be taken into account, and the written closing submissions had to be physically prepared with reference to the transcripts and other supporting evidence from the trial. Baraitser countered that the defence had given her 200 pages of opening argument and she did not see that much more could be needed. Fitzgerald, who is an old fashioned gentleman in the very nicest sense of those words, struggled to express his puzzlement that all of the evidence since opening arguments could be dismissed as unnecessary and of no effect.

I fear that all over London a very hard rain is now falling on those who for a lifetime have worked within institutions of liberal democracy that at least broadly and usually used to operate within the governance of their own professed principles. It has been clear to me from Day 1 that I am watching a charade unfold. It is not in the least a shock to me that Baraitser does not think anything beyond the written opening arguments has any effect. I have again and again reported to you that, where rulings have to be made, she has brought them into court pre-written, before hearing the arguments before her.

I strongly expect the final decision was made in this case even before opening arguments were received.

The plan of the US Government throughout has been to limit the information available to the public and limit the effective access to a wider public of what information is available. Thus we have seen the extreme restrictions on both physical and video access. A complicit mainstream media has ensured those of us who know what is happening are very few in the wider population.

Even my blog has never been so systematically subject to shadowbanning from Twitter and Facebook as now. Normally about 50% of my blog readers arrive from Twitter and 40% from Facebook. During the trial it has been 3% from Twitter and 9% from Facebook. That is a fall from 90% to 12%. In the February hearings Facebook and Twitter were between them sending me over 200,000 readers a day. Now they are between them sending me 3,000 readers a day. To be plain that is very much less than my normal daily traffic from them just in ordinary times. It is the insidious nature of this censorship that is especially sinister – people believe they have successfully shared my articles on Twitter and Facebook, while those corporations hide from them that in fact it went into nobody’s timeline. My own family have not been getting their notifications of my posts on either platform.

The US Government responded to Baraitser’s pronouncement enthusiastically with the suggestion that closing arguments did not ought to be heard AT ALL. They ought merely to be submitted in writing, perhaps a week after final witnesses. Baraitser appeared eager to agree with this. A ruling is expected today. Let me add that two days ago I noticed the defence really had missed an important moment to stand up to her, when the direction of her railroading became evident. It appears that because of the ground the defence already conceded at that stage, Noam Chomsky is one of the witnesses from whom we now will not hear.

I am afraid I am not going to give you a substantive account of Wednesday’s witnesses. I have decided that the intimate details of Julian’s medical history and condition ought not to be subject to further public curiosity. I know I cannot call back what others have published – and the court is going to consider press requests for the entire medical records before it. But I have to do what I believe is right.

I will say that for the defence, Dr Quinton Deeley appeared. Dr Deeley is Senior Lecturer in Social Behaviour and Neurodevelopment at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology, and Neuroscience (IOPPN), King’s College London and Consultant Neuropsychiatrist in the National Autism Unit. He is co-author of the Royal College Report on the Management of Autism.

Dr Deeley after overseeing the standard test and extensive consultation with Julian Assange and tracing of history, had made a clear diagnosis which encompassed Asperger’s. He described Julian as high-functioning autistic. There followed the usual disgraceful display by James Lewis QC, attempting to pick apart the diagnosis trait by trait, and employing such tactics as “well, you are not looking me in the eye, so does that make you autistic?”. He really did. I am not making this up.

I should say more about Lewis, who is a strange character. Privately very affable, he adopts a tasteless and impolite aggression in cross-examination that looks very unusual indeed. He adopts peculiar postures. After asking aggressive questions, he strikes poses of theatrical pugilism. For example he puts arms akimbo, thrusts out his chin, and bounces himself up on his feet to the extent that his heels actually leave the floor, while looking round at the courtroom in apparent triumph, his gaze pausing to fix that of the judge occasionally. These gestures almost always involve throwing back one or both front panels of his jacket.

I think this is some kind of unconscious alpha male signalling in progress, and all these psychiatrists around might link it to his lack of height. It is display behaviour but not really very successful. Lewis has grown a full set during lockdown and he appears strikingly like a chorus matelot in a small town production of HMS Pinafore.

There is a large part of me that wants to give details of the cross-examination because Deeley handled Lewis superbly, giving calm and reasoned replies and not conceding anything to Lewis’s clumsy attempts to dismantle his diagnosis. Lewis effectively argued Julian’s achievements would be impossible with autism while Deeley differed. But there is no way to retell it without going into the discussion of medical detail I do not wish to give. I will however tell you that Julian’s father John told me that Julian has long known he has Asperger’s and will cheerfully say so.

The second psychiatrist on Wednesday, Dr Seena Fazel, Professor of Forensic Psychiatry at the University of Oxford, was the first prosecution witness we have heard from. He struck me as an honest and conscientious man and made reasonable points, well. There was a great deal of common ground between Prof Fazel and the defence psychiatrists, and I think it is fair to say that his major point was that Julian’s future medical state would depend greatly on the conditions he was held in with regard to isolation, and on hope or despair dependent on his future prospects.

Here Lewis was keen to paint an Elysian picture. As ever, he fell back on the affidavit of US Assistant attorney Gordon Kromberg, who described the holiday camp that is the ADX maximum security prison in Florence, Colorado, where the prosecution say Julian will probably be incarcerated on conviction.

You will recall this is the jail that was described as a “living hell” and a “fate worse than death” by its own warden. Lewis invited Prof Fazel to agree this regime would not cause medical problems for Julian, and to his credit Prof Fazel, despite being a prosecution witness, declined to be used in this way, saying that it would be necessary to find out how many of Kromberg’s claims were true in practice, and what was the quality of this provision. Fazel was unwilling to buy in to lies about this notorious facility.

Lewis was disingenuous because he knows, and the prosecution have conceded, that if convicted Julian would most likely be kept in H block at the ADX under “Special Administrative Measures.” If he had read on a few paragraphs in Kromberg’s affidavit he would have come to the regime Julian would actually be held under:

So let us be clear about this. William Barr decides who is subjected to this regime and when it may be ameliorated. For at least the first twelve months you are in solitary confinement locked in your cell, and allowed out only three times a week just to shower. You are permitted no visits and two phone calls a month. After twelve months this can be ameliorated – and we will hear evidence this is rare – to allow three phone calls a month, and brief release from the cell five times a week to exercise, still in absolute isolation. We have heard evidence this exercise period is usually around 3am. After an indeterminate number of years you may, or may not, be allowed to meet another human being.

Behind Baraitser’s chilly disdain, behind Lewis’s theatrical postures, this hell on Earth is what these people are planning to do to Julian. They are calmly discussing how definitely it will kill him, in full knowledge that it is death in life in any event. I sit in the public gallery, perched eight feet above them all, watching the interaction of the characters in this masque, as the lawyers pile up their bundles of papers or stare into their laptops, as Lewis and Fitzgerald exchange pleasantries, as the friendly clerks try to make the IT systems work, and my mind swims in horrified disbelief. They are discussing a fate for my friend as horrible as that of the thousands who over 500 years were dragged from this very spot and strung up outside. They are all chatting and working away as though we were a normal part of civilised society.

Then I go back to my hotel room, type it all up and post it. The governments who are destroying Julian have through their agencies pushed the huge corporations who now control the major internet traffic gateways, to ensure my pained and grieving account is seen by very few. My screams of pain and horror are deadened by thick padded walls. We are all locked in.

 
 
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143 thoughts on “Your Man in the Public Gallery: Assange Hearing Day 16

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  • Courtenay Barnett

    Limiting the time defence counsel has to lead evidence in chief while permitting the prosecution unlimited time in cross-examination.

    Excluding witnesses of importance ( e.g. Professor Noam Chomsky).

    Seeking to exclude closing arguments; surely, the nature of the closing arguments would relate to the sworn testimony given by the witnesses – which of course could not have been fully guessed when the opening argument was delivered – so – right to be heard,

    Pre-typing rulings on defence submissions before the submissions are actually made?

    Well – Alice in Wonderland – verdict first and evidence after – literally!

  • Avocado

    Thank you for taking the time to publish your excellent account of this trial.
    It is truly disgraceful that your posts are being suppressed by Twitter and Facebook. Your blog is not the only one where authors have reported traffic dropping tenfold for no apparent reason.
    Yet I sense a contradiction in the reasons behind the suppression and the idea that Trump is the one pushing for the extradition.
    Why is the UK media ignoring this trial? Why is the media not telling it how it is – a fake trial with the US colluding with the UK governments? Bad news for Trump surely? Everyone knows “orange Man Bad”.
    Most UK national media (particularly the BBC) hates Trump. Twitter and Facebook hate Trump. Most UK politicians hate Trump. Why are they not shouting this across the world?
    This is surely a Democrat (Hillary?) game play.
    Who stands to lose most if Assange is released?
    Not Trump.
    He may be the President but that does not mean he is aware of what’s going on.

    • Dungroanin

      Like I have said before – the complete self contortions of the MSM/controlled AltMedia wanting Trump out but not defending Assange against Trumps extradition is a marvel indeed as they disappear up their own fundament!

  • Crispa

    On reading the description of Lewis “popinjay” came to mind – as in Henry IV Pt 1 Sc 3.

    HOTSPUR
    My liege, I did deny no prisoners.
    But I remember, when the fight was done,
    When I was dry with rage and extreme toil,
    Breathless and faint, leaning upon my sword,
    Came there a certain lord, neat, and trimly dressed,
    Fresh as a bridegroom, and his chin new reaped
    Showed like a stubble land at harvest home.
    He was perfumèd like a milliner,
    And ’twixt his finger and his thumb he held
    A pouncet box, which ever and anon
    He gave his nose and took ’t away again,
    Who therewith angry, when it next came there,
    Took it in snuff; and still he smiled and talked.
    And as the soldiers bore dead bodies by,
    He called them untaught knaves, unmannerly,
    To bring a slovenly unhandsome corse
    Betwixt the wind and his nobility.
    With many holiday and lady terms
    He questioned me; amongst the rest demanded
    My prisoners in your Majesty’s behalf.
    I then, all smarting with my wounds being cold,
    To be so pestered with a popinjay,
    Out of my grief and my impatience
    Answered neglectingly I know not what—
    He should, or he should not; for he made me mad
    To see him shine so brisk and smell so sweet
    And talk so like a waiting-gentlewoman

  • Auld Lang Syne

    Julian’s place in history, in legend, and in the panoply of latter day martyrs, is surely assured

    If there is one – and I am coming to question that – then may God bless him, because here on Earth he is surely damned and without hope of salvation

    “And there’s a hand, my trusty fiere!
    and gie’s a hand o’ thine!
    And we’ll tak’ a right gude-willie waught,
    for Julian Assange”

  • Auld Lang Syne

    I have a Masters in Law and a Bar scholarship; to admit that now brings a lump to my throat akin to confessing once-proud but upon reflection shameful membership of the Waffen SS

  • Peter Moritz

    “My screams of pain and horror are deadened by thick padded walls. We are all locked in.”

    That is all that needs to be said about a “justice system” that has been working thus for hundreds of years. What is the difference between what Dickens describes and this charade? Electric lighting?

  • pnyx

    These are the moments when state institutions make their subjects very actively aware of their impotence, thereby humiliating and stripping them of their human dignity. Such actions ultimately give birth to unnameable wrath and ultimately destroy societies.

    I wish you – and of course Julian first and foremost – the strength to resist the attack. And thanks.

  • Eoin

    Good grief, that supermax prison in the USA sounds like something out of Steve McQueen’s “Papillon”

    I’m not at all surprised that Craig is going through a particularly low phase.

    Hopefully, the deficiencies and injustices at this hearing will bolster the forthcoming appeal.

    [as for Twitter and Facebook, how can they continue to deny they are not publishers if they suppress a user by shadowbanning them?]

  • deaghlan

    How do I thank these men and women?
    Subscribe with a click or support their struggle which you believe in, monetarily or listen and pass it on to others. I am 50 , living in Vietnam and seeing the lack of understanding of this monumental event with opposition of fair is fair, controlling the ruling, throughout this globe . No one cares that where they get information from is not only under further threat but being designed in such a way as to keep you uninterested in questing it ever.

  • Tom Welsh

    ‘There followed the usual disgraceful display by James Lewis QC, attempting to pick apart the diagnosis trait by trait, and employing such tactics as “well, you are not looking me in the eye, so does that make you autistic?”’.

    Isn’t that known in the trade as “opening the door”?

    A reply that suggests itself is, “I am not looking you in the eye because you disgust me”.

  • Adrian C

    Harold Evans, the former Sunday Times editor who has just died, was rather nasty about Julian Assange in an FT piece some years ago, but he opposed prosecutions under the Espionage Act.

    https://www.ft.com/content/d3127b26-ff15-11df-956b-00144feab49a

    I posted a link to this on the Guardian’s obituary. It didn’t appear. It was immediately deleted. I tried again, writing Julian’s name as [email protected] [email protected] The same.

    They have an algorithm to prevent any mention of him.

    Free fucking press.

  • Dennis dubois

    I think it very sad. So much is falling apart vis-a-vis democracy, all is BS, all is directed by powerful forces, the public denied, Human right orgs, denied. Were it simply about a border or some such crap, I might just look away, but Assange is innocent, all this is total Bs, and I know now more than ever how much he suffers, what he has to lose; his family, his kids, === because he thought the truth was important to get out there. I pray in my mumbled words that some miracle will occur. We need him more that ever, as the press has become a facsimile of itself.

  • Dixie Sedgwick

    Sitting here hoping beyond hope that’s it’s not true. But it is and we are all screwed. Where is Trump, his promises, the unearthing of all the cover-ups? It’s not going to happen, Q is more disinformation. How they are handling Julian is how they will deal with us, who do not bend our knee. Thank you for writing and keeping us in the loop. It only confirms where we are now.

  • Greg Park

    How was this assumption arrived at that Baraitser will grant an appeal if she rules for extradition?

  • Deb O'Nair

    The most disturbing aspect of this dystopian nightmare is that everyone in this country is vulnerable to exactly the same kind of behaviour under the undemocratic, lawless fascist despots that have taken the country over. It beggars belief that so many people in positions of authority and influence just go along with – it is not hyperbole to point out that this is akin to the behaviour of the state during the Third Reich in Nazi Germany.

    • Tom Welsh

      I think it’s a mistake to ascribe such mass conformity to “Nazi Germany”, as if it were somehow unique or different. It is in fact standard human behaviour. Being a member in good standing of the Top Gang is the prime dictate as far as our instincts are concerned.

      One example. In summer 1914 Bertrand Russell was firm in his belief that war must be avoided at all costs, and that it would be the worst conceivable disaster. Everyone he knew agreed with him, and said so loudly. If war came, they declared, they would all be conscientious objectors and have nothing to do with fighting.

      The day after war was declared, Russell still believed and said the same things; but all his friends without exception suddenly became frenzied patriots and bloodthirsty supporters of the war. Trinity College, Cambridge fired him, and he and his family became unwelcome in most of polite society. When he and his wife attended an anti-war meeting, they were physically attacked by a mob (mostly women) and might have been killed while the police looked on – until someone told the police that Russell was the son of an earl, at which point they stepped in to protect him.

      Russell himself spent six months in Brixton Prison, and was fined a very large sum of money. ‘…his books were sold at auction to raise the money. The books were bought by friends; he later treasured his copy of the King James Bible that was stamped “Confiscated by Cambridge Police”‘. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bertrand_Russell#First_World_War

      • Deb O'Nair

        Things are different when war is declared and there is an identifiable foe to rally around. You make the point obliquely yourself when you say all his friends without exception suddenly became frenzied patriots and bloodthirsty supporters of the war. The point about the conformity of the authorities today is that it is purely political conformity for the sake of either being not willing or not able to oppose such naked abuses of power and authority, and not because there is an excuse that a war is being fought.

  • Jo

    Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova reminded that the majority of human rights organizations had condemned the journalist’s treatment MOSCOW, September 23. /TASS/. Russia is calling on international agencies, human rights organizations and the journalist community to continue helping save the life of Wikileaks creator Julian Assange, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Wednesday. She reminded that the majority of human rights organizations had condemned the journalist’s treatment. “Professional community is united in the opinion that the inhumane treatment of the WikiLeaks head concerns every reporter and undermines the future of investigative journalism,” the diplomat said. “We are calling on international agencies, human rights organizations and the professional community to continue making every effort to save the life of Julian Assange and protect his dignity.”

  • OnlyHalfALooney

    I’m not sure it’s up to Baraitser.

    The automatic right to appeal was removed in the 2003 UK extradition act. (Was this one of the war criminal Blair’s so-called “improvements”?) It seems that it is up to High Court to decide whether the appellant has an “arguable case” (“question of law or fact”).

    The text is:

    Appeal against extradition order
    (1)If the appropriate judge orders a person’s extradition under this Part, the person may appeal to the High Court against the order.
    (2)But subsection (1) does not apply if the order is made under section 46 or 48.
    (3)An appeal under this section—
    (a) may be brought on a question of law or fact but
    (b) lies only with the leave of the High Court.

    But I have also wondered about this question. Perhaps someone with knowledge of the UK legal system could comment.

    Also does an appeal automatically prevent extradition? I am still afraid the UK government will find some way to bundle poor Julian off to the US on some equivalent of a rendition flight.

  • David Otness

    Thank you for bearing witness for the rest of us, Craig. This must be extracting a terrible psychic toll on you from being so close to this.
    I am truly saddened for you, but applaud your steadfast and stalwart courage. Peace be yours.

  • Jay

    This is the biggest attack on press freedom in our lifetimes. Why are UK editors not demanding to be heard at the Old Bailey? Where are they? Where in particular is the Guardian, which the US is using to justify jailing Assange for life. Why is the Guardian so silent?

    Jonathan Cook
    https://www.jonathan-cook.net/blog/2020-09-22/guardian-silent-assange-trial/

    The Guardian’s war on Assange: Fake news and hostility in 44 headlines
    https://theguardian.fivefilters.org/assange/

  • Mark Golding

    We are all locked in by a tyrannical, high-handed and immoral entity known as the United States of America. A united entity so superior it can repudiate any internationally agreed human rights that does not serve its agenda such as the right to a fair hearing/trial introduced internationally in Article 10 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

    For instance, the United States has not accepted a single international obligation required under the ICCPR Covenant. It has not changed its domestic law to conform with the strictures of the Covenant. Its citizens are not permitted to sue to enforce their basic human rights under the Covenant. It has not ratified the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture.

    As such, the Covenant has been rendered ineffective, with the bone of contention being United States officials’ insistence upon preserving a vast web of sovereign, judicial, prosecutorial, and executive branch immunities that often deprives citizens of the “effective remedy” under law the Covenant is intended to guarantee.

    Pained and grieving is indeed the stark reality of this political show trial dominated by a predetermined finding to serve as a warning to other so called transgressors and also in my opinion held for the purpose of vengeance instead of justice? Clearly from Craig’s assiduous reporting Julian Assange has been denied basic fair hearing guarantees such as the right to examine and cross examine witnesses, the right to an independent and impartial judge and right to be properly informed of the charges laid against him and the defence team in order to adequately prepare their defence.

    I submit the prosecution implemented the tactic of ‘hearing by ambush’ as the prosecution failed to properly disclose incriminating documents later adduced as evidence in court. Often these documents were not disclosed to the defence and witnesses until the day that the document was used in court by the prosecution.

    The United Kingdom ratified the ICCPR in 1976 and I submit this legal gathering, in the UK court of law, wherein the judge discusses and decides the case, in the presence of the competing parties is contained within the boundaries of this covenant and should be committed to the United Nations as unfair with rulings pre-written and controlled by the U.S government.

    • Susan

      Hear, hear! Well said.

      It is astounding that Baraitser actually has the bare-faced contempt to state that the case is pre-fixed….. out loud….. and from the bench!!

  • Carolyn Zaremba

    What I want to know is, who is this Gordon Kromberg, and why is he being held up as some sort of authority?

    Also, I have just queried my friends about whether they are seeing my posts of Craig’s reports in their timelines. I have never heard of “shadow banning” before. That is unconscionable.

  • nevermind

    thank you for going through these mental and physical tortuous experiences, which must question anyone’s previous life experiences and understanding of the law, beyond the Nuremberg examples provided by history.

    Reading your last two paragraphs left me in tears as I cannot comprehend this macabre roll play and their prancing representation of a Kaffkaeske farce which will leave a permanent storck mark on Justitia, forever!

    We are now entering the moment when authorities are given powers beyond their aims objectives, and or briefs.
    whose feeble mind has born out these 45 degree policies more akin with the rules of the stasi or Goebbels?

  • Geoff Reynolds

    Pardon me for asking………………………………..

    We have seen many an account of the man accused of leaking America’s War Crimes and how they plan to punish him but i have not seen one iota about the punishment meted out to the actual perpetrators of the aforesaid crimes against humanity……………..

    ……………………Am i miss something here?

    ‘Those who expose guilt are punished yet those who commit the crimes walk away completely unchallenged?’

    Forgive me for being naive, but wasn’t that Judge Ratbraisers brief all along in this charade carefully hidden from view by a select few.

    • leroy

      ‘Those who expose guilt are punished yet those who commit the crimes walk away completely unchallenged?’

      Honi soit qui mal y pense

  • Mac

    I am feeling very frustrated that Assange’s lawyers are not calling out the magistrate’s ridiculous behavior. They are way too passive.

    • Ian

      I don’t know whether they feel they have to go along with the charade, and the curtailing of their legitimate arguments and evidence, but yo wonder what they got to lose by protesting at the odious way it is being processed, the blatant bias and attempts to silence important evidence is shocking.

    • Annie McStravick

      Agree. Fitzgerald and Summers are top silks (working pro bono, I believe) but they are so frightfully polite and gentlemanly in the face of Lewis’s outrageous tactics.
      I have no admiration for the American system of “justice” but I can’t help wishing that Julian had a lawyer like the flamboyant Johnny Cochran who, against all odds, obtained the acquittal of O.J. Simpson.

  • Runner77

    The censorship of social media post and blogs is clearly a major problem for the Left. Mirroring your own experiences with Twitter, only last night while I was watching the Leila Khaled webinar on Palestinian resistance, YouTube shut it down. Zoom and Facebook also censored it.

    My own experience with Twitter, on a far more modest scale, is similar to yours. Every day I get 5 – 10 new followers, but the numbers stay about the same; and for any post critical of Israeli actions in the occupied territories, the recipients can be numbered in single figures. My wife’s experience is identical. On one occasion, however, she retweeted and commented on a video that criticised IDF actions, but at a careless glance could have been construed as supporting them. This post was sent to over 9000 people, and so received hundreds of likes and retweets!

    Until we find a way of communicating that isn’t controlled by the state and their corporate allies, the Left is stuffed. Any ideas, anyone?

    • Ian

      The tech firms have created a dystopian, surveillance and suppression system in which we all live. Their overlords have learnt how powerful it is, and how they can control information and knowledge of what his happening. Combine that with the weakening of democracy and the rise of the demagogues, and we have a very chilling Orwellian environment. Assange represents the closing of the window of protest and right to knowledge of the state’s actions.

    • Susan

      Runner77,
      We need Satoshi to create a blockchain technology for Information. Immutable and incorruptible.

  • Alan Dow

    Blissex commented:

    “…this is an administrative review case part of an extradition process, not a criminal case, and in any case the defendant is the UK government, and the plaintiff is Assange, not vice versa.” (Assange Hearing Day 8: Comments)

    In this blog and consequent discussion, we have understood the term “defence” to refer to the legal case ‘defending’ Julian Assange against ‘prosecution’ in the US courts. However as Blissex has pointed out, Assange is the plaintiff.
    Could someone please clarify the legal position w.r.t. burden of proof, rules of evidence etc: As a point of legal procedure, is Baraitser able to limit the plaintiff’s time, while allowing the defence essentially unlimited time in rebuttal?

  • pasha

    Why doesn’t the defence work a Clint Eastwood “empty chair” ploy? Simply refuse to show up, neither lawyers nor witnesses nor anybody connected. en masse. Would that not speak louder than trying to wade through toxic rivers of sludge to prove apoint that should never have to be made in the first place?
    Could even a 100% bought-and-paid for “judge” like Baraitser ignore such a demonstration? Julian certainly would be no worse off than he is already.

  • Delia

    This is not a fair hearing.
    Reading the SSU program and thinking of how the US system treats its prisoners I have come to the conclusion that whenever the US points its finger at China it describes its own system.
    Would Julian be allowed to appeal?
    Perhaps to the ECHR? Brexit transition ends 31st December until then EU rules and laws still apply.

    • Alan Dow

      Found on Google:

      ECHR (European Convention on Human Rights) and ECtHR (European Court of Human Rights) were both established under the Council of Europe, itself established in 1949. UK’s membership of Council of Europe is separate from, and predates membership of the EU by 2 decades, and will continue beyond Brexit.
      As a signatory to the ECHR, the UK is bound as a matter of international law, to secure to everyone within their jurisdiction the rights set out in the Convention. These rights became part of UK domestic law through the Human Rights Act 1998.

      https://www.equalityhumanrights.com/en/what-european-convention-human-rights
      https://www.theguardian.com/law/2015/may/24/british-courts-echr-leveson

      However, one might hazard a guess that appeals the ECtHR might be made more difficult by political interference in the post-Brexit UK?

  • Sean_Lamb

    “On Wednesday the trap sprang shut, as Judge Baraitser insisted the witnesses must finish next week, and that no time would be permitted for preparation of closing arguments, which must be heard the immediate following Monday”

    Baraitser has a point. The defence has been doing a lot of grandstanding. More like they are playing for the gallery, than playing for the magistrate – who after all is the person who is going to make the decision.

    The key witness is tomorrow, where will find out if the Defence team is really working for Assange or not. Patrick Eller – and from the look of his CV, it seems an odd choice.

    https://metadataforensics.com/about-us/

    • Military Professional Development Education
    • Primary Leadership Development Course 2004
    • Basic Noncommissioned Officer Course 2008
    • Warrant Officer Candidate School 2009
    • Warrant Officer Basic Course 2009
    • Warrant Officer Advanced Course 2013

    Having someone with such heavy links to the US military seems like a bad idea. But I guess we’ll find out tomorrow.

    • Crispa

      From what I have read it is the other way round and it is the prosecution has done the grandstanding, the defence evidence has been eye-opening and should dispel any doubts held by the fence – sitters.

      • Sean_Lamb

        This isn’t a trial. It is an extradition hearing. The only questions of interest are:

        • is it a crime in the US?
        • is it a crime in the UK?
        • and is the motivation political?

        Lauri Love didn’t get extradited because of autism, but that is because he could have been tried in the UK – the argument was never people with autism are allowed to commit crimes. Assange can only be tried in the US for breaking the Espionage act. If he beats the Espionage charges, he could argue that his “hacking” charge could be heard in the UK.

        • bj

          To me (IANAL) the defence’s focus on Julian Assange’s mental or physical state is just a gross waste of time.
          Why not instead have insisted that Saint Kromberg be put on the virtual witness stand and have his Scriptures impugned?

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