back to article Assange lawyers fume over leaked rape case docs

Lawyers for Julian Assange are "angry" and "concerned" that someone leaked confidential Swedish police files detailing the rape allegations against the WikiLeaks founder, according to a report citing conversations with his legal team, and the team intends to launch a formal complaint with the Swedish authorities. It's unclear …


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  1. Rab Sssss


    side dish of irony anybody?

    For a bonus helping complete teh following phrase...hoist by you own .........?

    1. Anonymous John

      And another bonus if you know

      that the phrase starts with "hoist with".

      1. Anonymous John


        Five commentards who don't like smug pedantic bastards.

      2. TeeCee Gold badge

        Re: And another bonus if you know

        Actually the original quote from which this is taken starts with: "For 'tis the sport....", but who's counting?

        1. Titus Technophobe


          Anyway it is very funny that this the luminary of Wikileaks is a bit upset that somebody has leaked on him. So that would be a do as I say ……

    2. johnnymotel

      hoist by your own...


  2. Ashton Black

    Even so...

    Apples and Oranges. One is a government trying to be unaccountable, the other is a single citizen. One is trying to prevent embarrassing revelations, the other is attempting to go through due process.

    Not ironic, but predictable.

    1. BillG Silver badge

      Apples = Apples

      One is a government trying to prevent embarrassing revelations, while the other is an individual trying to prevent embarrassing revelations.

      As I understand it, releasing the details of the investigation is not illegal by Swedish law. It's not illegal by US or British law, either. You can read a lot more detail than that about ongoing investigations in any newspaper in the USA. As a matter of fact in US newspapers they publish the actual text messages, verbatim.

      The hypocrisy of the Wikileaks activists will be their undoing. That's why every single effort of the Wikileaks activists have failed, utterly failed, completely failed.

      1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
        Big Brother

        Failed failed failed.

        Repeat it some more and it will become true.

        "One is a government trying to prevent embarrassing revelations, while the other is an individual trying to prevent embarrassing revelations."

        And this is the same how? One is a leak about people taking the liberty of rolling over you while you pay them. The other a leak about people being rolled over while they have to pay.

        The same? Only if you are posting from State Worship Central [tm]. How's the aircon in there?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Apples are what now?

        So you admit that the US and UK governments should be tried for multiple murders in Iraq and Afghanistan.

        If it weren't for most governments holding themselves to a different level of accountability, wikileaks wouldn't have gained any traction with most of us.

      3. It wasnt me

        Im confused

        Whats all this got to do with apple ? Was it released on an iPad. Help please !!

      4. Scorchio!!

        Re: Apples = Apples

        I noted some way back that this story will be full of twists and turns. Anyone doubting the insightlessness of Assange, Julian, might want to listen to this interview:

        His view of equality is asymmetrical, right down to his apparent sexist view of the women as being "in a tizzy" about the semen he allegedly pumped into their bodies, rather than into a rubber sack.

        Rule 1, Julian is never wrong. Rule 2, when Julian is wrong really it is someone else or another organisation that is wrong.

        Now just be grateful for the effects that he has had on the world, and don't you worry about the welfare of the PRC and Saudi informants. This had to be done, the convict Julian Assange assures us of this, and he is unquestionably right. Hmm.

        1. Intractable Potsherd

          He isn't ....

          ... a convict. He has not been found guilty of anything.

          1. Scorchio!!

            Re: He isn't ...

            "... a convict. He has not been found guilty of anything."

            Oh but he is. Maybe your reading material is selective, or perhaps you believe that denying and minimising (common amongst offenders and their supporters/facilitators) a thing will make it go away, but no you are wrong, Assange is a convict. He was convicted for hacking into US defence computers, stealing their passwords and those of other organisations:

            "County Court Judge Leslie Ross said at the time he believed Assange had hacked into computer systems purely to empower himself, and not for any personal gain. But he warned that if Assange had not had such a disrupted childhood he would have gone to jail for up to 10 years."

            Here he is, minimising his offences:

            [Despite the judge's stern words Assange said.] “Your honour, I feel a great misjustice has been done and I would like to record the fact that you have been misled by the prosecution.”

            So you are in good company, with the convict Julian Assange. If you look at the profiles of offenders you will find the antecedents of their offending behaviours go back to an early age. This conviction marks one milestone in the development of Assange's behaviour. That you are so completely blind to it and deny that he is a convict, that he has been convicted, signals to me something that I have observed in this matter, namely that Assange's supporters are either blind to his offences (that would be due to the same halo effect that allegedly makes him seem so attractive to vulnerable women), or deliberately turn a blind eye to them.

            So you are *WRONG* and what is more I have posted the material on a couple of occasions, thus demonstrating that you didn't read it, and also that reposting material for the benefit of those who do not have the full picture is probably important.

            No denial makes a difference to the fact that Julian Assange was convicted of a crime 19 years ago, the crime of hacking passwords from US government/defence computers and those of other organisations. He even methodically dated the acquisition of each password. Presumably so he could keep track on how regularly they changed, or the likelihood that he would need to crack the password again. I say this because it is indicative of his modus operandi, and will figure highly in investigations into the current affair, during which he has employed a trick favoured by the Labour party in respect of trust funds; they *thought* that trust funds would make the origin of a fund safer, because they would technically be blind to them. It's almost like a firewall, and you have to admire him for his technique.

            I predict that this wall will crumble. Watch and see over the next few months because, believe me, he will have put a foot wrong somewhere, and it will be his undoing.

            It should be noted that Assange has yet to face a US court for the offence of hacking their defence computers, and I would not be surprised to see that they have reviewed the case.


            1. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
              Black Helicopters


              Good find.

              The interesting thing is that it explains a lot about Assange and his hatred of the US Govt. It also suggests that there may be more evidence against Assanage than just the act of 'publishing' stolen documents.

              I think as the case against Manning continues, more evidence against Assange will come out. It also means that while 'Espionage' is just a political charge, there could be more charges that are not political in nature may happen.

              The articles you linked to in other posts indicate that he was charged in being in possession of the passwords but not actually caught in the act of hacking. You're right that he could still face charges in the US, however, I think that enough time had passed that they couldn't charge him in the earlier crime. Of course that doesn't mean that they can't use it as evidence against him.

              1. Scorchio!!

                Re: @Scorchio!!

                "You're right that he could still face charges in the US, however, I think that enough time had passed that they couldn't charge him in the earlier crime."

                I'm not sure about that. This is not domestic crime, it is international, and I remember the Carlos case:


                Also look at the Rote Armee Fraktion case, for which cases in Germany are being tried some 30 years later. Some offences were also committed in 1993, which is a good target comparison, though Assange has not directly killed anyone, merely released data that point to informants located at specific GPS points. Be sure that a massive amount of elint is going into this right now, and don't assume it's US only. Last time I looked a former Russian KGB Colonel died for upsetting some very senior people in the Russian establishment. They do not mess about!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I am with BillG here.

      Apples = Apples.

  3. moonface

    Potential loss of cash cow.

    I am quite impressed by the Guardian's impartiality, in this instance.

    Let's hope that Julian doesn't retaliate and cut off their supply of Wikileaks.

    1. breakfast
      Thumb Up


      Damn right- those leaks were their Christmas holiday- no need to do any real reporting, just wait for the next big bunch of leaks to go out and hey presto: News!

    2. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge

      He Can't.

      Wikileaks or Open Leaks make the leaks public. The Guardian has just the same rights to view them as anyone else.

      So what if they don't get it first. They'll still get it before the majority of readers care and they don't have to spend a dime.

  4. raving angry loony


    Can someone point out to me where Wikileaks has leaked information about an active court case that could prejudice someone's trial?

    I, for one, can see the difference between leaking documents about the internal workings of ORGANIZATIONS and those working as part of that organization, and leaking documents that affect one individual in particular, outside of their role within an organization. One is what investigative journalism is supposed to be about, the other is the most infantile tabloid sensationalism.

    Frankly, I wish the Swedish courts would just charge Assange and let him with clear, or not, his name in court. This half-arsed public character assassination and harrassment is getting tiresome and puerile.

    Of course, it helps draw attention away from the real news - the contents of the cables themselves. So I guess the tactic is working well for those would would rather those remain out of the public eye. The strategy is working well too, as I can't find a single US or Canadian newspaper that is actually reporting on the cables themselves, but only on the continuing character assassination of Assange.

    1. Version 1.0 Silver badge


      The Wikileaks cables are being ignored by the mainstream press and TV in the USA - unless you count the calls to kill Assange as publicity.

      I'm much amused that the Tea Party (who basically run on the platform that "Government can not be trusted") fails to see that the Wikileaks cables prove their point in many cases ... but then, "thinking" doesn't see to be their strong point. Overall, the cables seem to give the impression that the US diplomatic corps are not the bunch of Muppets that most people had assumed they were - I'm quite impressed!

      Purchases from this month = $0

    2. Anonymous Coward

      Not black and white

      The situation is far from black and white in this case.

      Although I do support what Wikileaks is doing, I have to say that they really should have seen this coming.

      The Merkens claim that the information being divulged would (and they are probably right) affect on-going diplomatic processes and negotiations with other governments as private opinions by partisan members were disclosed to the public. That's roughly analogous to publishing client/lawyers discussions during a trial.

      If what is reported is true, I would think that Assange's lawyers would have been better to not make such a big deal of this leakage as the irony is not going to be lost on most people.

    3. Anonymous Coward

      Tomato, tomahto.

      Please, answer the following question honestly. Suppose there would be a similar trial running of a spokesman of a large organization, whether commercial or non-commercial (UN, Greenpeace, you name it), but non-governmental in any case. Suppose WikiLeaks would disseminate similar information about the trial. Would you chastise them for that act?

      1. Geoffrey W Silver badge

        @Tomato, tomahto

        Suppose Julian Assange comes to your house in person, breaks down your door and steals all your photographs and documents and posts them on a great big bill board in town. Would you chastise him for that?

        What I presented is just silly. And you are likewise presenting a hypothetical situation, which as far as I know hasn't happened, and you certainly give no instances of it happening so as far as "you" know it hasn't happened, and you are asking us to consider it and take it into account when judging Wikileaks. First find an instance then come back and try again.

        1. LoD

          @Geoffrey W

          My implicit argument was: given a similar situation (the subject in question is an individual with a large degree of responsibility in a prominent non-governmental entity), with a small irrelevant difference (the entity in question is something one not exactly might sympathize with), the OT would be likely to react differently.

          To my understanding, you argument against the following: you may criticize an organization on the basis of a hypothetical situation, on a basis of another, real situation, with subject and object roles reversed. Of course this is entirely wrong.

          But here's the thing: that's NOT even remotely the same statement!

          Please, no straw men, I'll get hay fever ;).

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward


          What he is saying is if ASSange run a bank or similar then you would be loving the fact that the info has been leaked.

          It is because you see ASSange as some sort of hero that you don't like the turn about.

          1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

            Re: No....

            I see what you have done there and it is very clever and satirical but please stop now.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Frankly, I wish

      "Frankly, I wish the Swedish courts would just charge Assange and let him with clear, or not, his name in court. This half-arsed public character assassination and harrassment is getting tiresome and puerile."

      The situation at the moment is that the Swedish authorities want to question him about some allegations against him, and have issued an arrest warrant to that effect. He is refusing to travel to Sweden to discuss those allegations with the police, and as such the Swedish authorities have requested that the UK authorities arrest him on their behalf and extradite him to them.

      If this is being unecessarily drawn out and unecessarily played in public then it is bacause Assange has chosen to do it this way.

      1. strum Silver badge


        >If this is being unecessarily drawn out and unecessarily played in public then it is because Assange has chosen to do it this way.

        While Assange was still in Sweden, the relevant prosecutor dropped the case.

        After he had left Sweden, another prosecutor re-opened the case (we can only speculate why). Despite many efforts from Assange's lawyer, that prosecutor has failed to address any charges or questions to Assange. Indeed, that prosecutor has repeateadly avoided any contact from Assange's brief.

        You have fallen for the propaganda.

        1. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge

          If its propaganda...

          then why is Assnage's lawyer crying foul over 'leaked' documents?

      2. Scorchio!!

        Re: Re: Frankly, I wish

        "If this is being unecessarily drawn out and unecessarily played in public then it is bacause Assange has chosen to do it this way."

        Indeed. His lawyers will regret this. Those who live by the sword die by it, ditto the net.

    5. Scorchio!!

      Re: difference?

      "Can someone point out to me where Wikileaks has leaked information about an active court case that could prejudice someone's trial?"

      Worse than that, Assange et al. admit that

      "He said that some leaks risked harming innocent people—“collateral damage, if you will”—but that he could not weigh the importance of every detail in every document. [...] A year and a half ago, WikiLeaks published the results of an Army test, conducted in 2004, of electromagnetic devices designed to prevent IEDs from being triggered. The document revealed key aspects of how the devices functioned and also showed that they inte rfered with communication systems used by soldiers—information that an insurgent could exploit. By the time WikiLeaks published the study, the Army had begun to deploy newer technology, but some soldiers were still using the devices. I asked Assange if he would refrain from releasing information that he knew might get someone killed. He said that he had instituted a “harm-minimization policy,” whereby people named in certain documents were contacted before publication, to warn them, but that there were also instances where the members of WikiLeaks might get “blood on our hands."

      From the documents I'm pulling together I can see the US might pull a bug shoot together. His disingenuous excuse for contemplating the idea of selling his leeks is revealing. Slowly it's becoming clear in so many ways that there is a lot of dirt in the background on this man.

  5. Anji

    Shome Mishtake Shurely?

    I'd have thought that releasing this information was guaranteed to ensure a fair trial would be impossible. If you can't have a fair trial you should not have any trial at all.

    1. Dr. Ellen


      Define "fair", if you will. I usually see this term as meaning "the defendant has a good chance of being acquitted, even if he DID eat the vicar's daughter and the judge and jury saw it."

      1. G Wilson


        > Define "fair"

        Without prejudice. As in, not judged before evidence is properly presented (with full benefit of rules of trial and evidence) - which this release would tend to make unlikely.

        Leaking *by a state* is not so much ironic, as entirely asymmetrical.

    2. Intractable Potsherd

      Inept lawyers?

      My first thoughts when I read the story were, "Why are the lawyers bleating - this is gold for them". If they are so inept that they can't turn this to the advantage of their client by arguing that there is no way that any conviction will be safe, then they need to find a new career.

    3. John I'm only dancing

      Fair trial?

      There is no such thing. I would have thought Ian Huntley and Maxine Carr would have used the trial by media defence after they had been hung, drawn and quartered by the red tops. But no, that was never going to happen. The prosecution would argue that sufficient time had elapsed and any juror would have 'forgotten' about that coverage.

      The same will be true here. I personally think Assange is a self-serving, publicity seeking prat, but that does not detract from what WikiLeaks publishes. Take Assnage out the equation and what have you got. Shady Government as always. The pursuit of him by various Government's is solely to deflect attention away from the truth about them.

      Sweden is just a sock-puppet in all this. Conveniently, they may have a little dirt, whether true or not, on Assange and it being utilised to the full by self-interest.

  6. Chad H.

    "trial by media"

    As someone who does believe that the timing of these charges is more that a little suspicious, I almost choked in disbelief on the quote there from the defence saying they don't want a trial by media.

    The defence started the media trial with the witch hunt claims, the sweedish lawyer saying he can't produce the intercepted SMS evidence (or say exactly what's in it) without fear of contempt of court etc, etc.

    Bed made, now lie in it

    1. Raumkraut

      But he started it!

      Actually no, this whole thing kicked off in the media when "someone" told the press that accusations of "rape" against Assange had been made with the police. This on the very same day those accusations were made, and before any official documents were filed, IIRC.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Doesn't matter who started it....

        In most cases all we see from the accused and their lawyers is "No Comment", "Can't comment on the case before it goes to trial"

        Yet Assange (or more accurately his defence) have been crying to the media about conspiracy theories. I don't care whether it was them or someone else who tipped the media off, they've played a very active role in the drama so far.

        So yeah, I kinda agree, they made their bed...........

        That said, I dare say they'd have been in for some reasonably dire consequences had they leaked info that would help their defence.

    2. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge

      You mean 'trying the case in the media'.

      The media will always 'try a case'. That is the reporter and paper will gather whatever facts they can find and they will present their views and some of the facts. (If you don't think that news organizations are not biased then you live in a dream world. Just ask CNN or Fox if the other isn't biased when they report on a story... ;-)

      But 'trying the case in the media' is where the defense team tries to bring credibility and do damage control by making statements to the press that may not be factual or they may present the facts but intentionally draw erroneous conclusions.

      I'll give you an example of a single case where both happened.

      In Cleveland Ohio, back in the 50's Dr. Sam Sheppard killed his wife. He claimed that a burglar killed his wife and attacked him. The hospital 'gossip' amongst the doctors was that the wounds looked superficial and self inflicted.

      Because Dr.Sheppard came from a very influential and well respected family, the case against him was not initially pursued. It wasn't until after reporters for the Cleveland Plain Dealer continually made inquires and ran stories until the Police finally investigated Sheppard and made an arrest after his story started to fall apart. (This is an example of where Sheppard was tried in the press.)

      He was found guilty and went to prison. 10 years later, a young F. Lee Bailey got Sheppard a new trial because of some comments made by the judge. Bailey 'tried his case in the media' in an effort to get Sheppard a new trial. When he was successful, in the 10 years, people died, and witnesses couldn't remember all of the facts. So Bailey got Sheppard released. My father was an attending at the time this happened and he believed that Sheppard was guilty. Most did, except for Sheppard's son. IMHO I believe Bailey had to try his case in the media in an effort to get Sheppard's initial trial overturned and get Sheppard a new trial. Without the press watching, I seriously doubt that the courts would have granted a new trial. (Sheppard was let go on a technicality).

      So here you have a case that shows both examples of the Media trying the case and the case being tried in the media.

      With respect to Assange, I believe that he wants his case tried in the media because he wants the attention.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Trial by media?

    From what I've seen, the trial is of the Swedish system and the complainants rather than of JA

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Did anyone seriously...

    ... not see this coming :p

    Everyone and their dog will be leaking anything they can now if Assange's name appears in it.

  9. IanDav

    Governments must be happy

    There must be a few governments enjoying this one. Such wonderful irony.

    1. ElReg!comments!Pierre Silver badge

      I don't think so

      As mentioned that leak seriously compromises the possibility of a fair trial. Some cases have been dismissed for less than that.

      1. El Zed

        and the point is..

        That it doesn't matter.

        The whole intent is to smear the character of Assange, not to give him a 'fair' trial, I seriously doubt that these allegations would have ever led to Mr. Assange ever seeing the inside of a courtroom in Sweden, that wasn't their intention.

        The point is, putting this rather crudely, shit sticks.

        Even if he went to trial in Sweden on whatever charges, even if the charges are dropped or he's found not guilty, the association of his name with wikileaks and sexual assault will stick in people's minds, constant repetition in the media of the same BS over the past couple of weeks has taken care of that...I refer you to the good Dr. Goebbels quote about lies and repetition.

        I'm neutral on this one, though I find it amusing that the media whore that is Assange has been hoist with his own petard. He knows the rules of the media game, considering some of the material wikileaks handles he should know the rules of the games various spook squads round the world play by, really, he should have been just a wee bit more careful where he dipped his wikki..

        1. Scorchio!!

          Re: and the point is..

          "The point is, putting this rather crudely, shit sticks."

          As the convict, Julian Assange, knows only too well, having practised it for years now. Payback is always difficult, and it is clear from his words that Assange is walking a difficult and tortuous path:

          I am sure the prosecutors have a certified 'original copy' of the interview.

          1. Intractable Potsherd

            Again ...

            ... he isn't a convict. Do you understand "innocent unless proven guilty"? He has not been convicted of anything, he is not in prison serving a sentence, HE IS NOT A CONVICT!

            (Sorry for shouting, Sarah, but sometimes it just gets too much)


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