Monday, 28 February 2011

Mark Stephens: "Demand open justice for Julian Assange"

Excerpts from the column published 27 February 2011 in

Demand open justice for Julian Assange

by Mark Stephens

"Julian Assange will, according to the judge’s finding of fact, be held in prison in solitary confinement when he is returned to Sweden and will then be interrogated, held without bail and later subjected to a secret trial on accusations that have been bruited around the world, not least by this newspaper. He has a complete answer to these charges, which he considers false and baseless. Even if acquitted, however, the mud will stick and, if convicted, the public will never be able to able to assess whether justice has miscarried. This country, which has given to the world the most basic principles of a fair trial – that justice must be seen to be done – denies that basic liberty for those that are extradited to Sweden.
Mark Stephens. Photo Matthew Blaney
How come our courts abandon our cherished principles in deference to European systems and prosecutors? The answer is that they are bound to regard the prosecutors of no less than 26 countries, including Poland and Romania – as perfect. This is the result of the European arrest warrant (EAW), one of the civil liberties disasters bequeathed by the Labour government when it passed the Extradition Act in 2003.

This act, quite incredibly, allows European countries to deem prosecutors and even policemen “as judicial authorities” (a contradiction in terms, because they are neither independent nor impartial) and to pluck their suspects from the UK so long as they tick the right box on the EAW form. In Assange’s case, for example, they ticked “rape” and the court cannot dispute that the allegation is of rape, even though the leading authority on sexual offences, the Oxford Vinerian professor, Andrew Ashworth, disputes this characterisation. There can be no questioning on the merits of the charges – in 2003 parliament abolished the traditional right of a suspect to require foreign governments to show a prima facie case before dragging them off to unfair trials. An inquiry into the working of the EAW system has been set up and Assange’s appeal to the high court may demonstrate the extent to which it allows our judges to stand up against unfair European systems. In the case of Sweden, for all its civilised and rational approach to many criminal justice issues – especially sentencing – it is a human rights black spot in relation to solitary confinement, the lack of a money-bail system and ill-treatment of foreigners in the very prison for which Assange may be destined – all matters for which it has been condemned by the recent European Committee report on torture.

But nothing so breaches the most fundamental principle of justice as its custom of holding all rape trials behind closed doors. This, so the prosecutor Marianne Ny explains, is so that “complainants may give their evidence better”. Of course it is absolutely right to give complainants the protection of anonymity and to limit the right to cross examine them on their past, but it is utterly wrong to keep it from public view. . ."
Read the all text of Mark Stephen's column in Pakistan Observer here

Other posts on Assange & WikiLeaks in Professors blogg:

Sunday, 27 February 2011

Assange VS Pinochet

Duplicate of a column published in Newsmill 28/2 2011 in its original format. Updated 3/3 2011 with link to an article by Jonas Sjöstedt published in Svenska dagbladet (Brännpunkt) "Sverige borde kriminalisera totyr" ["Sweden should make torture a criminal offense"]. 



Professor: Assangefallet visar att Karl Marx hade rätt

Predictably, the London courts ruled no-extradition in favour of mass murderer Augusto Pinochet while assisted by his lawyer Clare Montgomery. The USA friendly dictator could return to Chile where he remained free and unpunished. Predictably again, the same courts rules the opposite - yes to extradition - in the case of libertarian publisher and USA enemy Number One Julian Assange, after the request from Sweden which is represented by the very same Pinochet's attorney, Clare Montgomery.


Publishes in Sweden Professors blogg, which has extensively treated the case Assange, including guest-contributions by Noemi Wolf and Andrew Kreig. Marcello Ferrada-Noli is PhD in Psychiatry (Karolinska Institutet) and Professor Emeritus in Public Health Sciences. Formerly Research Fellow in Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School. At present Senior Advisor at the Department of Immunology, Stockholm University.
The German philosopher Karl Marx (1818-1883), originally an erudite on Epicurean Greek philosophy, left also to posterity a prolific amount of political-philosophical writings and theses. Some among of those have history neglected as unfeasible and were sentenced to collect dust in the Utopia-shelve of our libraries. Yet, some of those analyses have remained amazingly prevalent regardless epochs or latitudes. One among these is the description of social superstructure, i.e. juridical institutions, laws, moral, religion, and all what form the cultural sphere of societies, that, according to the philosopher, will always follow the direction given by the economic and thus political interests governing theinfrastructure of those societies (The German Ideology, 1846).

No one has ever been able to refute the Supersestructure Theory. Instead, we daily receive a confirmation of its postulates. With regard to the juridical sphere, a conclusion derived from such theory is that there is no such a thing as "objective" law, in the sense of objective, non-biased distribution of justice.

As expected, when I filed in 1998 an extradition case against mass murderer Augusto Pinochet   - being the former dictator at that time in London (see my article in Bränpunkt, SvD, 6 November 1998) -  the London courts with the intervention of the British government ruled no-extradition in favour of the request put forward by the dictator's lawyer Clare Montgomery. The once CIA-appointed dictator could then return to Chile where he remained free and unpunished. My request to get Pinochet extradited to Sweden or Norway was filed in support of a similar process lead by Spanish magistrate Baltazar Garzón.  Pinochet had been accused among other of being the responsible for ordering the killing under torture (so called disappearance-cases) of my personal friends Dr. Bautista Van Schowen and Edgardo Enríquez.

Unsurprisingly again, when Sweden requested upon the London courts the extradition of USA's enemy number one, the libertarian Julian Assange, founder of WikiLeaks - and for the task they asked Pinochet's lawyer Clare Montgomery -  the London Court ruled the opposite: Yes to extradition.

Claire Montgomery, the lawyer representing Sweden, had received a world reputation of her own when she declared publicly that "Torture is not international crime" (AP).  Her statement echoes still strong in circles of political refugees and torture survivors of the Pinochet regime. I am personally quite sensitive to such stands, and, as a Swedish citizen by political adoption, I deeply regret such choice made by Swedish authorities in selecting the attorney that would defend Sweden's case.

 Torture IS indeed a crime. At least a ten percent of the Swedish population is foreign-born, a group allocating considerable cohorts of political refugees. They would experience a deep concern on that high officials of the social democratic government still do not face trial for their alleged implication in the CIA rendition flights (political refugees under Swedish custody, that were transported from Swedish soil to brutal torture elsewhere).

In that respect, it is just odd that Judge Howard Riddle ruled out any possibility that Julian Assange could be subjected to rendition (imprisonment and or eventually torture elsewhere outside Sweden), referring that the "only live evidence on the point came from the defence witness Mr Alhem". The only "evidence" put forward by former prosecutor Alhem, to the best of my recall, was his opinion on that if so the case it would cause a "media storm" in Sweden!

What "media storm" have we ever witnessed in Sweden every time it has been known that Swedish authorities have collaborated in the CIA rendition flights, which ended in the torture of a number of political prisoners taken illegally from Sweden?

What "media storm" ensued the revelations 2004 in the resarch-journalism program Kalla Fakta (TV4) containing an interview with the former head of the Swedish Security Police (SÄPO), Jan Danielsson, who affirmed he unequivocally remembers SÄPO took contact with the Ministry of Justice on the "sensitive issue" of the approved extraordinary renditions of political prisoners to the USA?

I would not say, however, that former prosecutor Alhem's statement would have "mislead" Judge Riddle to a wrong conclusion, to the naive notion that every foreign-born political activist signaled by the USA of being a terrorist - like in the case of Julian Assange - is at good safe in Sweden. In my opinion, the verdict to extradite Assange to phase-Sweden it was already written in the superestructure's Bible.

The Swedish Minister of Justice at the time of the CIA-renditions referred above was Thomas Bodström, who was reported on those grounds to the Swedish Constitutional Committee. His connection in the case Assange is something I have trace to statements documented by Thomas Bodström himself. As I have previously mentioned here in Newsmill, he stated  in his blog "Bodströmsamhället" the 3 December 2010 that "it isour law firm that represent the plaintiff (the nominally accuser-women in the Assange case) through Claes Borgström" ["Det är vår advokatbyrå genom Claes Borgström som är målsägandebiträde"].

All these facts, I repeat facts, such as Bodström being an influent member in a social democratic group, in which one of the accusers of Assange was at the time of the complaint a paid employee of such organization. Or the fact revealed by Claes Bogström in his Guardian interview that the case against Assange was reopened on the cause of his initiative (read Bodström & Borgström law-firm, according to Tomas Bodström) and not by initiative of the young women appearing nominally as the complainers, etc. All this chain of facts is far from being non-sourced "speculations" or "rumours".

Certainly there are many journalists and articles from Sweden which are serious and objective-report abiding.  They are however, as I have said previously, few against the mainstream.

Instead, the standard design in most of the Swedish press - apart of what I described in the  Swedish Trial by the Media of Julian Assange - seems to be very simple: a) ignoring to publish or comment relevant facts, b) as an alternative focus, to indulge in publishing and ridicule the numerous rumours and conspiracy-thesis  circulating  around the Assange case - and that nothing have to do with what Julian Assange himself have really said, as he has recently clearly explained and c) just lye bluntly when reporting on news that absolutely it would not  be possible to leave unreported. This is for instance the case of the verdict of Judge Howard Riddle on the Assange extradition-request defended by Clare Montgomery on Sweden's behalf.

Dagens Nyheter, in the article by Dan Lucas "Assange utlämnas till Svensk domstol" (25 February 2011, page 13. Not on-line, why?) states:
"Articles in the Swedish press would have attacked Assange so hard, as he cannot expect a fair trial (in Sweden) according to (Assange's) defence". . ."But those arguments were dismissed away by Riddle " (in "those" included the DN-article Assange's lawyers critical stand on PM Reinfeldt's declarations on the case).

That is utterly untrue.

I have monitored particularly this issue since it was me who authored the witness-statement in that regard (the Swedish media hostile treatment of Assange) presented by the lawyers upon the London Court.

One thing is that such witness statement was “not referred to in open court”, because the judge did not consider the additional material submitted by the lawyers 22 February on the formal ground it was such close date to the verdict. But a completely another thing is to expressly manifest, as the referred DN article does, that Riddle disregarded this and/or other reports giving a panorama on the unfair media hostility against Assange. Otherwise is not comprehensible that Judge Riddle referred particularly to this issue in his "Summary of the facts found" (see below).
In fact, the Swedish main newspaper Svenska Dagbladet, in an article authored by journalist Karin Thurfjell 24 February 2011 reports that Judge Riddle concluded on the verdict issued today that "there is a significant negative publicity about Assange in Sweden".

In the chapter "Summary of the facts found" of the Court verdict, Judge Howard Riddle concludes unequivocally in item 19 (page 10), among other: "There has been considerable adverse publicity in Sweden for Mr Assange, in the popular press,"

In my witness statement I had written concretely that my analysis pointed "to a significant over-representation of negative assessments" about Assange in Swedish media articles.

The establishment's popular media has indeed its impact in Sweden's morning paper-readers. Their on-line editions have however to compete with new, more advanced debate and news-media. This would explain why certain articles, such as the mentioned above from Dagens Nyheter, cannot afford a scrutiny of its uncertain content.

Swedish authorities and rulers in diverse spheres take for granted that what it is said in their media are what the Swedes as a whole would digest. Let me remind the following to these authorities and rulers, while still they might ponder to decide the extradition of Assange to the USA.

Sweden has one of the highest computer-use per capita, world-wide. Just one of these on-line forums devoting numerous threads on the Assange case is for instance Flashback. Flashback have on Julian Assange alone two and a half million views visiting over 25 000 posts. That forum alone have a membership of over half million users, in a country with a total population of only nine million.

A further analysis demonstrating the ostensibly lack of objectivity in Judge Riddle verdict, particularly on his unfair and inexact comment on witnesses Brita Sundberg-Weiman and Björn Hurtig, can be found in this recent post at Professors blog .

A main point of the Superstructure theory referred above, in regard to the judges and politicians' privileges in the administration of a law, in a juridical system constructed by themselves, to protect themselves, can be summarized in the Assange case with help of a telegraphic-wise reflection I seized from the twittering ensuing Riddle's verdict:

"Spain could not extradite Pinochet on war crimes, #wikileaks #assange extradited on broken condom? UK legal system a joke! ".

Marx was right in this one. He was buried in London.

Other articles on the Assange case in Professors blogg

    1. 13 May 2012. WikiLeaks Cables Reveal How Sweden Constructed Solution to "Iraqi Refugee Problem" -- Sweden mass-deporting refugees arguing ''honour-killlings'' and "opinion"
    2. 11 May 2012. Expressen's Press Awards - Second Part. By Traci Birge
    3. 3 May 2012. "Timing the procesess" - Protracting Swedish process for timing with process in the U.S.
    4. 30 April 2012. On Göran Rudling's article about something else - not me or my research
    5. 28 April 2012. 'Journalistic Jealousy' Or Politics, Or Both? “A media conspiracy at both sides of the Atlantic”
    6. 23 April 2012. Julian Assange, The Professors, and The Taxi Driver
    7. 21 April 2012. News update from Washington. By Andrew Kreig
    8. 5 April 2012. Sweden's political decision on the extradition of Assange to the U.S.
    9. 4 April 2012. On Trolls' Behaviour and The Statistical Underrepresentation of Honour-killings in Sweden
    10. 4 April 2012. Debating a Taboo: Gender, Honour Killings and Fear of “the Other” By Traci Birge
    11. 31 March 2012. Disclosing The Fifth Column. Clarifying on some fabricated accusations against WikiLeaks leaders and supporters
    12. 28 March 2012. "A Huge Favour To Democracy" RT Interview in Stockholm on WikiLeaks, Julian Assange and Democracy
    13. 22 March 2012. On Prof Ferrada de Noli's Honour-Killings Theses. By Traci Birge
    14. 20 March 2012. “Throw them all”. Swedish State Feminism hijacking scientific research for cultural-racist aims
    15. 16 March 2012. Letter to the Australian Ambassador by German Friends of Wikileaks / Berlin
    16. 12 March 2012. A Most Wanted List of Missing Items in the Julian Assange Case. By Dave Phillips
    17. 8 March 2012. Swedish State Radio Misrepresenting Positions of Professors Blogg on Sweden's Case Against Assange and WikiLeakss
    18. 8 March 2012. Sweden-Saudi arms factory scandal: "Arms Export Control" Authority participated in the secret meetings. Called by Defence Minister
    19. 7 March 2012. Expressen’s “Press Awards”. By Traci Birge
    20. 6 March 2012. WikiLeaks releases statement on recent fabricated stories in the Swedish Press
    21. 6 March 2012. Sweden's FOI publicly slandering WikiLeaks while in secret building arms factory for Saudi Arabia dictatorship
    22. 6 March 2012. Indicting Julian Assange represents a dramatic assault on Free Speech, journalists, and the public right to know. By Jennifer Robinson
    23. 2 March 2012. Plan Z: the latest national chauvinist campaign anti-WIkiLeaks in the Swedish media
    24. 1 March 2012. WikiLeaks Claims Secret U.S. Charges Against Assange. By Andrew Kreig
    25. 29 February. Professors blogg in debate with Expressen on Radio1. New attacks in Swedish media against Julian Assange
    26. 28 February 2012. Important Statement by the US Centre for Constitutional Rights regarding reported sealed Assange indictment
    27. 28 February 2012. Shall Sweden grant to US the extradition of Julian Assange?
    28. 26 February 2012. What Julian Assange does with WikiLeaks is not only right. It is morally right, it is ethically right and it is legally right. By Jennifer Robinson
    29. 23 February. Anatomy of an untruthful scoop. Explaining Sweden’s psychological warfare against WikiLeaks and the political case VS Julian Assange. Part One
    30. 21 February 2012. Sweden: POLITICALLY appointed lay judges to JUDGE Assange
    31. 17 February 2012 (2). Om de upprepade anklagelserna mot Assange av svenska journalister
    32. 17 February 2012 (1). Journalister till tjänst i krigföringen mot Assange, och mot hederlig journalistik
    33. 13 February. Sweden and Pinochet. On Torture crimes, Extradition lawyers, and Politically designed judges. Part I
    34. 3 February 2012. Naomi Wolf: "What the Occupy movement must learn from Sundance"
    35. 2 February 2012. The further political exploitation of the "Case Assange". Even if the Swedish legal system would not be politically minded, the Swedish case VS. Assange is still political, and so are the government interferences in the legal case
    36. 2 February 2012. U.S. Attorney General E. Holder does not prosecute U.S. torturers; he prosecutes those who speak out about U.S. torture. Will Julian Assange be next? By Jennifer Robinson
    37. 1 February 2012. The extradition process initiated in Sweden against the WikiLeaks founder is to the uppermost extent POLITICAL
    38. 29 January 2012. Summary of recent analyses covering Human-Rights issues in the J Assange and B Manning cases. By Andrew Kreig
    39. 27 January 2012. Swedish government using media to interfere in the legal process against Julian Assange
    40. 7 January 2012. Professors blogg is now closed
    41. 5 January 2012. Naomi Wolf: "The streets of 2012"
    42. 31 December 2011. Human Rights concerns regarding the case against Julian Assange. By Jennifer Robinson
    43. 26 December 2011. Historical meaning of WikiLeaks, and Swedish myths on Julian Assange
    44. 25 December 2011. Manning Hearing Began With Challenge on Fairness. By Andrew Kreig
    45. 24 December 2011. Professors blogg to silence by unintentional cause
    46. 22 December 2011. New Swedish deceptive information about Assange and the prospective of extradition to US
    47. 18 December 2011. Distinguished Intellectuals, Professors, Officers and Politicians in Letter to Australian Foreign Minister: Highly Concerned Over Prospective Sweden's Rendition of Assange to US
    48. 1 December 2011. The “Duck Pond” Theses. Explaining Swedish journalism and the anti-Assange smear campaign
    49. 1 December 2011. Wikileaks buried Swedish official myth on Neutrality
    50. 29 November 2011. Further devious reports on Julian Assange in the Swedish National Television. Update
    51. 27 November 2011. EC to stop Facebook's harvesting of personal information. But Swedish connection could be worse than ad-targeting operations
    52. 25 November 2011. Naomi Wolf: "The Shocking Truth About the Crackdown on Occupy"
    53. 17 November 2011. Wikileaks Flag
    54. 15 November 2011. Blind Trust, Blind Justice. Article by Bella Magnani
    55. 7 November 2011. NATO medals to Sweden. Can Sweden US-aligned stand guarantee fair extradition process?
    56. 4 November 2011. Sweden will grant extradition of Assange to the US. If not stopped by international political pressure
    57. 3 November 2011. Sweden, Nato and Assange
    58. 2 November 2011. Questo è il motivo per la vendetta svedese contro Julian Assange e Wikileaks
    59. 1 November 2011. A fair trial for Assange?
    60. 1 November 2011. This is why
    61. 1 November 2011. "Bild and Clinton in conference before decision on Assange extradition" in Second-Opinion
    62. 31 October 2011. Extradition trial in Halloween day
    63. 29 October 2011. London “Cyberspace” Conference. USA, Sweden and UK foreign ministers meet on Assanges' extradition verdict day
    64. 25 October 2011. Swedish psychological warfare against Wikileaks and Assange
    65. 19 October 2011. Naomi Wolf: "How I was arrested at the 'Occupy Wall Street' demonstration"
    66. 19 October 2011. Barricade philosophers. The Assange road
    67. 12 October 2011. Sweden's credibility in trouble. Why blame Wikileaks or Julian Assange?
    68. 11 October 2011. Official Sweden further endorses the unscientific theses of radical-feminism
    69. 5 October 2011. From demon exorcism to State-feminism. Further background on the Swedish case against Assange
    70. 5 October 2011. Radical "feminism". What is scientific research and what it is not. End of story
    71. 3 October 2011. The Satanism-theses of Eva Lundgren and the psychiatric origins of Swedish State-Feminism. Part I
    72. 3 October 2011. Beaten lady (Slagen dam) in Stockholm’s Subway
    73. 30 September. Julian Assange as "symbolic issue" for the radical-feminists in Sweden
    74. 14 September 2011. Läkarkåren utpressar domstolen
    75. 14 September 2011. The Swedish case against Assange in Professors blogg. Updated links
    76. 8 September 2011 (22.14). Wikileaks cable on procedures at UN Women would help explain Sweden’s feminists campaign against Assange
    77. 8 September 2011 (08.21). A forensic scenario in the Swedish case against Assange
    78. 23 August 2011. The Case Assange and the Misuse of the PTSD Diagnosis in Swedish Rape Trials
    79. 9 August 2011. A London journalist does interview on negative Swedish-media reporting of Assange case
    80. 8 August. "Man har sålt en lögn till allmänheten"
    81. 3 August 2011. More on Feminism and State-Feminism. Strawman argumentation against critic to the state-feminism factor in the Assange case
    82. 29 July 2011. Pseudo-Science in Swedish Rape Trials. With an Introduction on the Origins of State-Feminism in Sweden
    83. 29 July 2011. Bloggers vs. Old Media: Who Wins and Why. By Andrew Kreig
    84. 6 July 2011. Name issues with their names. The Assange case and Swedish statsfeminism
    85. 5 July 2011. Naomi Wolf: "Julian Assange's sex-crime accusers deserve to be named"
    86. 3 July 2011. Swedish updates on the Assange case
    87. 18 April 2011. The affair Irmeli Krans in the case of Sweden against Assange
    88. 17 April 2011. Swedish authorities face yet another irregularity in their sex probe of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. By Andrew Kreig
    89. 15 April 2011. Sweden's Serial Negligence in Prosecuting Rape Further Highlights the Politics Behind Julian Assange's Arrest. By Naomi Wolf
    90. 15 April 2011. Rigged documentary on Julian Assange in the Swedish National Television. Part 3: "Men are animals"
    91. 15 April 2011. Rigged documentary on Julian Assange in the Swedish National Television. Part 2: “Men that hate women”
    92. 15 April 2011. Rigged documentary on Julian Assange in the Swedish National Television. PART 1: The Political Agenda and Dirty Tricks
    93. 14 April 2011. Rigged documentary on Julian Assange in the Swedish National Television. CONTENTS
    94. 10 April 2011. Om Sverigedemokraternas utrikes politik är ”osvensk” vad är då Socialdemokraternas? Kampen för Assange och Mannings frihet fortsätter.
    95. 7 April 2011. The worsening of Sweden's credibility is the responsibility of Swedes themselves
    96. 22 March 2011. NATO, Gaddafi and Assange
    97. 19 March 2011. Censorship of Assange-articles in the Guardian & Swedish press
    98. 12 March 2011. Opinions on Assange case and censorship in Swedish media
    99. 11 March 2011. Case Assange: Rights Activist Challenges Ethics of Swedish Courts, Media. By Andrew Kreig
    100. 10 March 2011. Naomi Wolf: "WikiLeaks aftermath. The Middle East Feminist Revolution"
    101. 6 March 2011. Have Swedish Pirates Betrayed Assange?
    102. 3 March 2011. Naomi Wolf: "WikiLeaks, Revolution, and the Lost Cojones of American Journalism"
    103. 28 Feb 2011. Mark Stephens: "Demand open justice for Julian Assange"
    104. 27 Feb 2011. Assange VS Pinochet
    105. 27 Feb 2011. Comments on Judge Riddle's verdict & and lawyer Jennifer Robinson’s interview
    106. 26 Feb 2011. The Pirate Party should stand for their values. They should struggle for Assange and Wikileaks
    107. 24 Feb 2011, Assange's case. Witness Statement of Professor Marcello Ferrada-Noli
    108. 22 Feb 2011, Swedish media's censorship on Assange case
    109. 20 Feb 2011, Does Sweden Inflict Trial by Media against Assange?
    110. 18 Feb 2011. Anonymous Stop U.S. Business Plot Against, Bloggers, Unions, Rights Activists. Guest column by Andrew Kreig
    111. 13 Feb 2011. Karl Rove’s Swedish Connections: The Controversy And The Facts. Guest-article by Andrew Kreig
    112. 11 Feb 2011. Matching critic on Reindfelt's involvement in the Assange case
    113. 11 Feb 2011. Partner At Firm Counseling Assange’s Accusers Helped In CIA Torture Rendition. Guest-article by Andrew Kreig
    114. 10 Feb 2011. Karl Rove, Sweden, and the Eight Major Aberrations in the Police Sex Crime Reporting Process in the Assange Case. Guest-article by Naomi Wolf
    115. 9 Feb 2011. Analysis: Assange’s lawyer’s error shouldn’t determine the case
    116. 9 Feb 2011. Strongest appeal to Swedish prosecutor - "Hamlet without princess"
    117. 9 Feb 2011. Hamlet utan prinsessan. Åklagaren Marianne Ny starkt utmanat av Asange's advokat
    118. 8 Feb 2011. Objection to Sundberg-Weitman's testimony irrelevant
    119. 6 Feb 2011. Q & A: The Assange case and Swedish extradition
    120. 4 Feb 2011. Key-witnesses severely contradict state-feminist Borgström & women-accusers in Sweden’s phony case against Assange
    121. 22 Jan 2011. Swedish PM Reindfelt lies in London on Assange extradition
    122. 13 Jan 2011. Bordström & Borgström VS. Wikileaks
    123. 11 Jan 2011. New analysis: Swedish political crusade against Assange and Wikileaks
    124. 29 Dec 2010. Assange's message to Swedish journalists
    125. 29 Dec 2010. Asssange, criminal without a crime
    126. 26 Dec 2010. Sweden’s phony prosecution against Assange is POLITICAL and IDEOLOGICAL
    127. 13 Dec 2010. Afghanistan, Vilks, bomb, Sweden
    128. 11 Dec 2010. Sveriges Assange-anklagelser i kriget mot Wikileaks OCH yttrandefrihet
    129. 9 Dec 2010. Is there a CIA connection in the Swedish Assange-plot?
    130. 7 Dec 2010. Analysis: Why Sweden revenge against Assange

    Comments on Judge Riddle's verdict & Lawyer Jennifer Robinson interview

    "Mr Assange had offered himself for interview. Indeed he was interviewed on the 30th of August. He then suggested a number of other dates and the prosecutor denied those on the grounds that a police officer was sick. Of the 20,000 strong police force in Sweden that was a reason to deny him an interview." (Lawyer Jennifer Robinson in ABC interview with Tony Eastley ) Lawyer Robinson in photo below, as appeared in the ABC site
    Update 15 March 2011: This post was published  27 February 2011 but its linking to the  SvD's article "Hurtig: Jag blir förbannad" was censored, filtered or not processed by "cause unknown" (see a comment on this event in Opinions on Assange case and censorship in Swedish media)

    Comments on Judge Riddle remarks "There has been considerable adverse publicity in Sweden for Mr Assange, in the popular press,"

    Comment on Björn Hurtig's witnessing

    These are instead the determinant facts in the context  (and about that one miss amid numerous skilful assertions from the part of Björn Hurtig at the London Court).
    1. The paramount fact is that the Swedish prosecutors DID ALLOW ASSANGE TO LEAVE SWEDEN without making the interrogation a compulsory or conditional item for his leave!  This fact in the strongest meaning confirm the artificial - also called “malicious” -  manoeuvre of try the arresting of Assange abroad, a sine-qua-non condition for having him extradited to Sweden and therefore held him incommunicado in waiting for – in a worst, yet highly credible scenario – the extradition, alternative illegal rendition to the USA. Sweden does have a proven experience and routine as to how implement such illegal rendition. In fact, is the disclosure by Wikileaks of such “operative -intelligence” cooperation between the Swedish government and the USA one of the most potent explanations of Swedish official vendetta against Assange and Wikileaks.
    2. Hurtig did also declare in the London proceedings of Feb 8 – fact which was not rebutted by the Crown prosecutor acting in Sweden’s behalf – in good time prior to Assange’s departure from Sweden (to Germany, and then the UK) he had contacted prosecutor Marianne Ny suggesting a new date for the prosecutor’s questioning of Assange but she adduced unavailability from her part.
    3. That a new questioning of Assange never took place  (The Independent journalists seem to forget that Assange had indeed been interrogated extensively by the police on the issue. See the  leaked police report) is  then hardly solely accountable to a sms-message missed by Hurtig. 
    Ergo, the argument of Assange’s defence in disclosing the truly nature of the extradition warrant do remain in its full power. The vicissitudes around one sms message – received surely amid hundred others by that time by Hurtig -  have no bearing at all in the  solidity of Assange’s position with regard to the  “peculiar” position of de Swedish Judiciary and its outmost artificially constructed proceeding in the Assange case.

    Comment on Brita Sundberg-Weitman witnessing

    Judge Howard Riddle, in assessing the relevance of the witness-statements of Brita Sundberg-Weitman, might have missed the main relevant, and for the case only determinant point of such witness statement. For it are her professional and academic experiences, and her expertise-knowledge on the Swedish judiciary and legal-system, what makes the witnessing of Sundberg-Weitman valuable in the reviewing of the publicly known procedures performed by Marianne Ny as prosecutor in the case Assange.

    Ultimately, it was about an expertise assessment from the part of Associate Professor and former Judge Sundberg-Weitman as to which extent are the public professional doings of Marianne Ny (her public activities as prosecutor, or her statements in commenting legal issues, lecturing, etc.) congruent with Swedish judiciary and legal praxis.

    Therefore, the question eventually to rise by Riddle with regard to the quality of her testimony would have instead had emphasis on how well, or under which professional position or circumstances,  Brita Sundberg-Weitman knows what she does about the judiciary and legal praxis of Sweden. Nothing more.

    Likewise, whether Sundberg-Weitman was personally acquainted with Ny, or how much she was directly involved with the case itself is downright irrelevant. And the fact that she was NOT could hardly speak against the objectivity of her testimony.

    Quite at the contrary, if the witness would have had a personal or close professional acquaintance with Prosecutor Ny, then her witness-report would have been scrutinized from the view as to whether that close relationship would have bias her statement.

    If I may protract the issue a bid further (just an argument of logics, not juridical): Do consider that neither Howard Riddle has ever worked close to the case or have had a personal or close knowledge of the procedures done by Ny in the case (the argumentation used to “disqualify” the witness). At the moment of the Court proceedings, all the cards shown, Judge Sundberg-Weitman knew as much or as little as Judge Riddle on the issue “personal or close knowledge of the procedures”. Yet he passes judgment ad-hominem against her testimony exclusively based on that matter. Which, as I said above it was not even the point with her witnessing.

    It is solely the professional and academic experience  (of Brita Sundberg-Weitman) as such the valuable parameter for judging whether prosecutor Marianne Ny’s registered doings as public-prosecutor or commenter are or not in consistence with acceptable Swedish judiciary praxis. Other issues for instance that witness Sundberg-Witman stated in London "she had no personal acquaintance with Ny" (The Christian Science Monitor, 8/2) are in the context  wholly irrelevant. 

    Comment on Sven-Erik Alhem witnessing

     My appeal for support to the Assange cause is not motivated in the "fear" - and this is strictly my personal view - that Assange would really risk a negative outcome from the part of a Swedish court. Of course nothing can be totally predictable in such matters, but my point is that there is not a chance for a juridical case against Assange and my conviction is that in no instance a Court-tenable case could be started against Julian Assange, or if so, ending in a negative sentence. The case it will be most possible - or it should be  - dismissed after a little show making possible for Bodström/Borgström save face, like wise Marianne Ny, the infallible Swedish system, etc. As you have also referred, although in  other terms, the accusations are ominous ungrounded and deprived of evidence.
    The peril is however in another level. First, that Phase-Sweden II would entail the extradition, legal or illegally to the USA or to another country. In this point, frankly I am not in disposition to consider any utopian argument à la Sven-Erik Alhem who would have indicated in London that such extraordinary measure is not conceivable in Sweden, that if so it would occasion a “media storm” etc. If Sven-Erik did not know about the extraordinary renditions (so are they also called) which have happened in Sweden – several times – I would understand his statement.

    It was an unfortunate statement because Judge Howard Riddle used it as “the only live evidence” on that such peril would not exist for JA in Sweden. Alhem, which has a reputation of solid ethics, is not the kind of person that would imagine as first scenario the judicial system he had represented as one to be trespassed by a bunch of corrupted politicians in secret agreements with foreign powers. But “things” happens. And they had in Sweden.

    I have myself been imprisoned in similar conditions accused of subversive activity, before and under Pinochet’s dictatorship. I do know what I am talking about, however I have to respect that not everybody can conceive that such illegal measures from democratic governments can in true be implemented in the darkness offered by peoples’ trust and passivity.

    Nevertheless “ignorantia non est argumentum” (Baruch de Spinoza, 1677). That you do not know about a happening does not mean that the event has not actually occurred, or that it may happen again, in this case. Sweden DO HAVE a recorded praxis of extraordinary renditions, concretely, political prisoners which after the request of the USA are in Swedish territory.

    Finally, the fact is that, regarding the legal or “open” requests of extradition from the USA, Sweden has granted extradition to the USA in ALL OF CASES in which the asked person was in Swedish territory.

    Marcello Ferrada-Noli

    Assange lawyer says her client is being treated unfairly

    "TONY EASTLEY: As mentioned the British judge's verdict isn't the end of the matter and for the foreseeable future Mr Assange will remain in Britain.

    Jennifer Robinson is one of Mr Assange's legal team.
    Jennifer Robinson was the verdict a surprise?

    JENNIFER ROBINSON: It wasn't completely unexpected Tony. European arrest warrant cases are notoriously difficult to defend. In 95 per cent of them the person requested is indeed extradited to the country that has requested them.

    TONY EASTLEY: But surely it doesn't help his case overall to be told that the magistrate has come down on the side of the Swedish authorities?

    JENNIFER ROBINSON: Well that's the way it goes and that's why we have appeal processes.

    In a number of cases in the last year this same judge has come down hard on European arrest warrant cases and the person has then won on appeal at the High Court.

    We believe that we have very strong arguments to be put. For example on the question of criminality, that means that it is, the courts will not extradite Julian if we can demonstrate that the conduct alleged would not amount to a crime in England.

    We have an expert report from the most senior criminal lawyer in this country, the Vinerian Oxford criminal law professor, professor Andrew Ashworth, who said this would not amount to a crime.

    None of the acts specified that form the basis of the warrant would amount to a crime in this country.

    TONY EASTLEY: So you'll be taking that...

    JENNIFER ROBINSON: The judge today disagreed.

    TONY EASTLEY: Yeah you'll be taking that to appeal.

    JENNIFER ROBINSON: Yeah exactly.

    TONY EASTLEY: The magistrate did say however that Mr Assange's Swedish lawyer deliberately misled the court by claiming that local authorities had not first tried to interview his client. Can you explain that?

    JENNIFER ROBINSON: I think that's a simplification and I think the criticism that Mr Hurtig received today was somewhat in my humble view unfair.

    We have to remember that the authorities did have some communications with Mr Assange and Mr Hurtig prior to him leaving Sweden and we acknowledge that.

    Mr Assange had offered himself for interview. Indeed he was interviewed on the 30th of August.

    He then suggested a number of other dates and the prosecutor denied those on the grounds that a police officer was sick. Of the 20,000 strong police force in Sweden that was a reason to deny him an interview.

    Then subsequent to that it was only in the week of 21 September that the judge was speaking of, the prosecutor made one or two attempts, one via text message and one telephone call with Mr Hurtig to arrange an interview. He was unable to contact Julian at that time.

    TONY EASTLEY: So it was a slip-up.

    JENNIFER ROBINSON: It was a slip-up and he acknowledged that in his evidence in chief. But unfortunately the way it appeared on cross-examination, the way the judge presented it today is I think very, really unfair.

    TONY EASTLEY: What's the next step?

    JENNIFER ROBINSON: We will be appealing. We have seven days to appeal from the day of the decision which was today. So we'll be filing that appeal to go before the High Court in this matter."

    Other articles on the Assange case in Professors blogg

    media links, 1, 2, 3