back to article WikiLeaks boss labels UK extradition order a 'rubber stamping process'

Julian Assange was awarded bail this afternoon, after his lawyers secured funds understood to total £200,000. The WikiLeaks founder learned earlier today that he would be extradited to Sweden to face questions regarding two alleged sexual assaults in the country, following a ruling by Judge Howard Riddle at Belmarsh magistrates …

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Good luck with getting the UK to withold extradition to the US...

Just look at Gary McKinnon's case to see how easily UK.gov give in to any US requests...

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Alien

Gary McKinnon's Case

How long ago was that extradition case started? And where is Gary McKinnon now? He's managed to avoid being extradited for over five years, and the case is far from over.

But let's not let facts get in the way of our conspiracy theories.

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FAIL

Read the post

I think you will find that the original poster was talking about the government's attitude and willingness to hand him over.

The only reason he is not in the US is because of appeals and the judicial process, nothing to do with the government.

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Happy

Sorry 'bout that

"The only reason he is not in the US is because of appeals and the judicial process, nothing to do with the government."

...but I come from a place where appeals and the judicial process ARE part of the government.

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Paris Hilton

So

No separation of powers in the UK then? Who'da thunk?

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Grenade

rubber stamping?

Whether you like it or not that's the whole point of the European Arrest Warrant system. Authorities in one country send arrest warrant to another country and after to basic check the subject is sent off. If anything from the way the EAW has been described in the past it seems Assange has been given an unusal amount of opportunity to try to resist this.

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Stop

EAW

Not all European courts are equal. Many Britons have been hauled off to Eastern European jails for years before they even face trial. It is a serious miscarriage of justice and part of the EU police state.

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Re: rubber stamping?

"If anything from the way the EAW has been described in the past it seems Assange has been given an unusal amount of opportunity to try to resist this."

Indeed:

"Any appeal will be challenging for Mr Assange.

Specialist extradition lawyer Michael Caplan QC said: "Resisting EAW requests are exceedingly difficult.

"The process assumes that a person will get an equally fair trial in any of the member states, so there are very limited grounds for opposing extradition." "

( http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-12569462 )

This part of the article is most telling:

"Judge Riddle found Mr Hurtig to be an "unreliable" witness as to the efforts he made to contact his client between 21, 22 September and 29 September.

He found "attempts were made by the prosecuting authorities to arrange interrogation in the period 21-30 September, but those attempts failed".

Accordingly he found "as a matter of fact, and looking at all the circumstances in the round, this person (Mr Assange) passes the threshold of being an accused person and is wanted for prosecution"."

My impression thus far of the Assange defence teams is one of immaturity and desperation. He'll go. The sad part is that he will pay very little toward the cost, if at all, and he will hold a lot of more worthy cases up.

Journalist my arse.

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Anonymous Coward

Police state?

Every Policeman in the EU has a number - these are prominently displayed on their uniform. These numbers are to identify individual officers and hold them responsible for their actions. When they disappear, this will point towards us having a police state. Until then, just find someone from, say, Romania, people who survived the Nazis, etc, etc and ask them about a police state, they'll set you straight.

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FAIL

Really?

So what "Eastern European countries" are we talking about, especially since none of them are even in the EU?

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Of those you mentioned...

...only the Baltic States could be classified as "Eastern Europe", and you probably did not mean those, and only those, in terms of EAW abuse (the most prolific producer of the warrants seems to have a name starting with a "P", IIRC).

By the way, I'm from one of the countries you've mentioned, and I do know where I live - although I'll take it as a compliment for my English skills, thanks :).

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Anonymous Coward

Not above the law

Why does this douchebag think that he is above the law?

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Why House Arrest & £200,000 bail

Come on Julian, you are a flight risk, if you can't see why you are as daft as you look.

You could always try and seek political asylum in the Australian embassy if you want.

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FAIL

Of course he's a flight risk

He has a foreign passport and no job, abode, assets or anything else that need keep him in the UK. He could hop a plane to anywhere in the world with very little problem. You may *think* that he's a decent chap who'd never skip out, but the fact that he's already done so once (in Sweden) doesn't really support that argument.

It's hard to tell who's more stupid/gullible - the poster or the 5 (so far) who upvoted it.

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Anonymous Coward

AC 16:34

--"So much of a flight risk in fact that he even checked with Swedish authorities that it was okay to leave the country before he came to the UK to which they said "Yes, you can"."

Really?

This *is* the same Julian whose own Swedish lawyers admitted when questioned under oath that he left Sweden without telling them, some days after a request had been made to his lawyers to interview him, but which his lawyers couldn't pass on to him because they he'd been uncontactable for days?

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Grenade

Re: Indeed

"Are you struggling to understand what a flight risk is or are you just being sarcastic?"

It would seem from the performance in a UK court of his Swedish defence counsel, that he was aware that the Swedish police were about to issue an arrest warrant, and it would seem that he broke an agreement with them to return for questioning.

In addition his nomadic lifestyle and paranoid nature |(as witnessed by journalistic reports that I have cited, reports from genuine journalists, not pretend ones such as Assange) under pin this. He never was likely to stay anywhere. It's written in his behaviour and lifestyle. He's always on the lam, but in Europe it is no longer so easy, and that is why the Costa del Crime was recently given a legal enema.

Assange is a f l i g h t r i s k. I hope that I typed that slowly enough for you.

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Happy

Re: Why House Arrest & £200,000 bail

"Come on Julian, you are a flight risk, if you can't see why you are as daft as you look.

You could always try and seek political asylum in the Australian embassy if you want."

What an excellent idea! He could be returned to his homeland by means of a condom shaped diplomatic bag! 'Twould be a pity if the thing ripped as it was being moved out of Australia house, and the contents spilled over the womb of London, though greatly ironic.

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Re: @ 'tards

"I'm sorry this is too difficult a concept for your simple ignorant minds to comprehend, and that you think by typing something with spaces between the letters it'll somehow make you less wrong. It will not."

Poor you, evidently incapable of reading court reports. It was made abundantly clear during the extradition hearings that the police wanted to interview Assange and that he agreed to. Moreover, under pressure in court his Swedish defence counsel admitted that the Swedish police had contacted him several times, expressing a wish to interview Assange. Finally, it is now very clear that they told him that they were about to issue an arrest warrant for Assange.

This is available in the court reports, which are as a matter of record a better source of information than news reports.

I'm fairly confident that Assange will be housed in a Bubbery before too long. Exercise your mind on that.

HTH.

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Transparency, please ....... this way.

""In such an event the consent of the Secretary of State in this country will be required, in accordance with section 58 of the Extradition Act 2003, before Sweden can order Mr Assange’s extradition to a third State."

And is there any cast iron guarantee given, that in this particular and peculiar case, will UK consent not be given, under any circumstances? Or is that something which they cannot/will not give, ..... at this time, for any time in the future, and therefore is that protection being mentioned here, a despicable and cynical red herring, and the decidedly ambiguous point needs to be clarified and clearly globally stated, so that all know where everyone stands on the issue?

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Anonymous Coward

Cast iron?

>>"And is there any cast iron guarantee given,..."

Why the hell should anyone give a guarantee about possible future consent in the case of a US request that hasn't happened and about which evidence therefore hasn't been provided?

What's so special about Julian that the UK should do something for him they wouldn't be expected to do for anyone else (even one of their own citizens), and which there'd be no logical legal basis to do?

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Re: Cast iron?

"What's so special about Julian that the UK should do something for him they wouldn't be expected to do for anyone else (even one of their own citizens), and which there'd be no logical legal basis to do?"

None, but reiterating legal facts will only cause you to be voted down; truth it would seem is now a culturally relative item - something encouraged a great deal in the past 14 years - meaning that you are only seen as saying the truth if people like it.

It's the same with fire; can we have it nasally fitted, and do we want such a thing? Assange is getting up many people's noses; do we want such a thing? It would seem that this is not the only part of European people's anatomy that he has fitted, like a glove by the sound of things. ;-)

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Anonymous Coward

@Scorchio!!

>>"None, but reiterating legal facts will only cause you to be voted down; "

Oh, I'm *so* crying inside about that.

Given the standard of many of the people who bother to post their conspiracy shite, just copying some argument they heard someone use somewhere on the internet without caring or checking whether it's total bollocks, in a way that would make the average barrack-room lawyer look like Rumpole (or maybe Perry Mason for our US readers) I dread to think what level the *non-posting* downvoters are at.

Still, I guess you don't really *need* opposable thumbs to use a mouse.

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Re: @Scorchio!!

">>"None, but reiterating legal facts will only cause you to be voted down; "

Oh, I'm *so* crying inside about that."

Even better, their quality of intellect can be seen for what it is, thus making your comments about opposable thumbs yet more apposite; the conspiracy theory here is held in the face of contradictory evidence that would require their impoverished brains to turn about. Given that even sheep have a degree of intelligence (see recent research on learning in sheep) it is clear that even ovine intellect is superior to these creatures, leaving almost no comparison insults. The evolution of an opposable thumb-forefinger supposedly stimulated the evolution of intelligence and the very social co-operation required to make group co-operation and forethought a distinguishing characteristic of intelligence in upper primates. Given that the infotards and commentards (emulating classic Asperger's geeks) lack social co-operation and the ability to anticipate the consequences ahead of Assange et al.'s behaviour and their lonely online existences, it is increasingly apparent that their failure to learn can only be remedied by the rapid application of executive action; the arrest and prosecution of people like Assange committing the sorts of offences that we manifestly see, in the form of theft and publication of state secrets. I expect they'll be "in a tizzy" about this, and find all kinds of justification for the act of rape - as happened in earlier exchanges - but, like downvoting things they do not like, that will show them for what they are. Being downvoted by such intellectually foreshortened individuals is both a weathervane for the limitations of their intellectual development and a pleasure. In fact I order them to vote me down now!

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@AC

Wasn't Rumpole an alcoholic?

(Yes thanks to PBS and the BBC we've seen him in action. :-) )

I guess one should be proud of the down thumbs one gets from the commentards.

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FAIL

No warranties, express or implied.

"What does the United States have to do with a Swedish Extradition process?

It has been falsely stated that I said the CIA or Pentagon was involved in the initial allegation. I have never said that. I have never said who was behind those allegations, simply that they were untrue."

So you separate your leading question about US involvement and your disclaimer that you've never claimed the US was involved with nothing more a paragraph marker. Good show that.

No, you've taken great pains to never explicitly state who was behind the allegations, but you've also taken great pains to craft leading questions and statements, whether from your own mouth or through your legal team, to imply that the US was behind them.

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Grenade

Huh?

So,

McKinnon who admitted to committing the crime has been fighting extradition for how many years now?

And the court systems don't work? Now that's rich.

Unfortunately for Assange, He's fighting an EAW along with the fact he's not a UK citizen.

He's also made an ass of himself and the faster he gets to Sweden, the faster he faces trial and gets what he deserves.

Sorry but No means no, and maybe if he bathed more often, he'd get laid more often.

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Anonymous Coward

Julian says...

>>"he told reporters outside the court this afternoon that the order was a "rubber stamping process"."

The EAW system always had minimal grounds for discretion, since that was how it was designed in the first place.

The only obvious way to avoid being potentially subject to it would have been to leave Europe after leaving Sweden, but had Assange thought there was a better foxhole than the UK, perhaps he would have gone to it?

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Stop

or perhaps

having done nothing wrong, he thought had no reason to actually have to go anywhere?

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Anonymous Coward

RE: or perhaps

Dude, he ran from Sweden (and has refused to go back without a fight) so he did see a reason to actually have to go somewhere.

Not saying he's guilty (it all seems a little weird of the Swedes to me) but these are not the actions of a confidently innocent person - maybe the actions of someone suffering from severe paranoia I can accept - but that is the reason he should face trial. Given the media spotlight on his case the only way he wouldn't get a fair trial is if his conspiracy theories are correct. In which case 20 years in a Swedish jail is probably a better option than accidentally brutally stabbing himself in the stomach while shaving.

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Anonymous Coward

@AC

>>"Or perhaps having done nothing wrong, he thought had no reason to actually have to go anywhere?"

This *is* a famously paranoid individual you're talking about here, who'd already claimed that he was the victim of a dirty tricks campaign.

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Anonymous Coward

Correction:

> I am subject – a non-profit free speech activist – that I am

> I am subject – an accused rapist – that I am

Fix'd that for you.

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Re-correction

Okay, Mr/Ms Anonymous Coward, I accuse you also of rape. Now you too can forever more describe yourself as 'an accused rapist'.

The best you could accurately do is 'I am subject - to having an allegation made, case dismissed then reconsidered, being allowed to leave the country and then being ordered back after all to answer more questions -that I am ...'

So nope, you ain't fixed nothin'

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Re: Correction:

"> I am subject – a non-profit free speech activist – that I am

> I am subject – an accused rapist – that I am

Fix'd that for you."

I would dissert on the matter of sub judice, but that has not bothered his fellow travellers and ticks. If and when he is found guilty, why I wonder what will be said then? Conspiracy? Outrage? Unfair? Julian is innocent? This will run for years, and years and years. Though I have made up my mind I'll not speak it until he is tried and a result issued.

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Anonymous Coward

maty

>>"The best you could accurately do is 'I am subject - to having an allegation made, case dismissed then reconsidered, being allowed to leave the country and then being ordered back after all to answer more questions -that I am ...'"

What's 'accurate' about that?

He left without the knowledge of even his own lawyers at a point where he was wanted for interview. His own lawyers admitted that under oath.

There was no point when there was no case against him, just a very short period of time (about a week) when opinions about the prospect of the most serious of potential charges went from yes to no to yes again as different people looked at the case.

I'm sure you're aware that subjective judgements like that happen all the time, and about all that could be *reliably* concluded was the the decision about the seriousness of the investigation and potential charges was a borderline one.

You know as well as I do that people who want to see a conspiracy would have done so however many prosecutors had been involved, and whatever opinions there'd been other than a final decision not to proceed.

Had the second prosecutor agreed with the first, would anyone here now thinking it's a setup have thought differently?

Can't really see it, myself.

Had the charges been more serious, or involved only one woman or three women, or a woman turning up with signs of violence, or a woman reporting him the morning after, would the conspracy nuts really have been less likely to cry 'setup'?

Doesn't seem very likely.

All that's happening is people who would have assumed setup whatever the situation was (short of a self-filmed incriminating video and a confession) are scrabbling around for 'evidence' while not being intellectually capable of distinguishing evidence from rationalisation, or rumour from truth.

When people repeat things that aren't true as 'evidence', they tend to give the impression that they probably can't do any better.

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FAIL

Psy ops?

Strange, what I see here is mostly people repeating the "party line" as if it were the absolute truth. Just because some judge says it doesn't mean it is true. At least where I live, (yes, it is an western European country), where the judge's opinion changes according to the wealth or the power of those involved, like it seems to be happening here.

Despite all the reports at the time showing that the charges had been dismissed and were only reopened when another Swedish prosecutor decided to reopen the case, *after* Assange left Sweden, those who spout this party line as truth are stating (as if it proved any crime) that the Assange lawyers were out of touch with him for some time. I didn't know that it had become a crime to not contact one's lawyer for some time. And he wasn't wanted for questioning then. Maybe it applies only to those the USA want to prosecute?

And BTW, if the charges weren't made by someone who on her blog confessed (then deleted, forgetting that there are caches) having made them up to frame Assange because he hadn't been faithful, maybe it would be taken seriously. As it is, and with the timing of the charges, it is quite clear to someone with at least half a brain that all this affair is just a way to frame Assange to try to make him pay for what wikileaks as shown of the corrupt USA.

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Anonymous Coward

@AC

>>"Despite all the reports at the time showing that the charges had been dismissed and were only reopened when another Swedish prosecutor decided to reopen the case, *after* Assange left Sweden,"

Any chance you could link to any of the reports showing that 'charges' had been dismissed?

It does seem that some people around here may have either rose-tinted memories, or just rely on repeating what other people claim without actually checking for themselves if it seems to be what they want to believe.

I assume you're aware that Marianne Ny was in charge of the case long before Assange left Sweden, and and that the investigation of rape charges was ongoing at the time he left?

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Anonymous Coward

Cannot be extradited to US?

I thought that the UK *could not* allow him to be extradited to the US, since if convicted he was potentially facing a death sentence. If the UK was to allow extradition it would be in breach of it's stand against capital punishment.

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Black Helicopters

AFAIK

The death sentence needs to be 'sought' by prosecution, if an undertaking is given that it would not be sought, then the UK would happily drop it's trousers, assume the position and brace itself.

at least thats how it works on the west wing, so it must be true :D

of course the catch all is that he gets extradited there, as soon as they trump up a charge, with such an undertaking. Then palin wins, all bets are off, and he gets murdered by the state.

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@AFAIK

>>"of course the catch all is that he gets extradited there, as soon as they trump up a charge, with such an undertaking. Then palin wins, all bets are off, and he gets murdered by the state."

And the US shits all over future prospects of extradition of murderers and terrorists for the sake of one person like /Assange/?

Oh yes, that's *very* likely.

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Jobs Horns

Even the Americans accept that

If they want to extradite Assange whether from the UK or Sweden they will need to give assurances that they will not seek the death penalty before either country will countenance the extradition.

As for the use of the warrant, a leading UK barrister has confirmed publicly that the charges against Assange and stated by Sweden in the extradition request are valid and would be sufficient to get him tried in the UK made on Radio 4 on Tuesday this week.

Julian Assange is someone who is interested only in himself and his own self promotion and the anecdotal evidence is that the guy got some of these women in to bed by playing his trump card of his noteriety in relation to the Wikileaks site.

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Kind of convenient

And may we ask .. why did Assange come to the UK in the first place?

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Anonymous Coward

Guilty?

If Assange and his lawyers feel he is innocent of the rape charges, then the best thing he can do is get himself to Sweden as soon as possible and get the case over. The Swedes have already confirmed they will charge and prosecute, so by staying here he simply looks like he is trying to evade a rape prosecution. The "extradition to the US" is a red herring by conspiracy theorists.

Once proven not guilty, he's a free man and can leave Sweden and the UK whenever he likes.

On the whole, arrest, charge thing - as I understood it, you are arrested on suspicion - I believe those are the words (never been through the process) - "I arrest you on the suspicion of ....... You do not have to say anything, but anything you do say....." So it's pretty irrelevant that they haven't charged him (which I assume they must do on their own soil).

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Grenade

Let the attacks begin......

So the UK system has "let down" Mr Assange and authorised the beginning of the abduction process that will ultimately see him banged up in the good ol'US of A. Fortunately his willing band of "helpers" will now begin their attack on the UK IT Infrastructure to further proclaim his innocence. Its a good job that the UK Government is sh*t at sorting out IT contracts, so most of the justice system still runs on old computers that are not networked and therefore impervious to the "restorative justice" processes of Mr Assange's anonymous associates.

Having seen the news coverage today, I would like to think that the raft of D-List celebutards would make a special appearance should I ever stray off the straight and narrow.

If you are looking for a pointer boys (and girls to remain impartial) then I would start here and work up -> www.direct.gov.uk/ or even number10.gov.uk. And make sure you spell the judge's name correctly when looking for his Twitter / Facebook accounts !!!

"AC" - well for obvious reasons of course........

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FFS everybody, calm down.

This is Sweden we are talking about. Not Turkey. Not Iran. Not the US. Sweden.

It's not like the British judicial system is anything to write home about. As for extradition to the US, he is probably safer in Sweden as the official British ministerial position re: the US Government is on its knees with its butt cheeks parted.

It's an accusation of a couple of sex crimes. Bog standard consequence of this is for the accused to be shipped back home if they want to put him on trial.

Very few trials that hinge on he said/she said consent get very far or result in guilty verdicts, regardless of guilt or innocence.

His status in Sweden is pretty much the same as it is here.

Assange is not Wikileaks. Wikileaks is not Assange. It would be better for Wikileaks if Assange got his trial over and done with. It is publicity, but not all publicity is good publicity.

The extradition is unlikely to bother Anonymous, whatever Assange, his legal team or his giant ego hint at.

And if he skips bail, big deal. The British government are two hundred grand up. They could use it to keep open a few of those libraries they are closing.

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