back to article Assange™ is 'upset' that he WON'T be prosecuted for rape, giggles lawyer

The Swedish director of public prosecutions, Marianne Ny, has announced that she will end the investigation into Julian Assange's alleged sexual molestation and unlawful coercion. According to an update on her official website, Ny has now "discontinued the investigation of Julian Assange with respect to suspected sexual …

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I don't know if he is right, but he (Assange) seems believe that "1,000 years of proven justice process" have already been wiped out, and that is why he is currently hiding in the ecuadorian embassy?

      1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

        To be fair, most western nations seem pretty keen on getting rid of "innocent unless proven guilty", so I'm not sure why anyone would trust any western government if they made their living trading in governmental secrets.

        "For too long, we have been a passively tolerant society, saying to our citizens: as long as you obey the law, we will leave you alone."

        --David Cameron,

        Prime Minister of the UK.

        WTF

    2. chris 48

      @Velv

      "And he better pray Hillary follows Obama, otherwise Jeb Bush is going to issue an extradition warrant to Ecuador. And then where will he go.."

      It doesn't matter who is in power in the US. It matters who is in power in Ecuador. Although it often doesn't seem that way, US law != World law

    3. Irony Deficient

      an extradition warrant to Ecuador

      Velv, the US−Ecuador extradition treaty was written in 1872, and last updated in 1939; it’s the oldest extradition treaty still in effect in the US. Among its list of extraditable offenses is abortion, which is no longer an extraditable offense since it no longer has dual criminality. Which criminal offense might Assange be charged with for the US to be able to extradite him from Ecuador?

    4. x 7 Silver badge

      "otherwise Jeb Bush is going to issue an extinction warrant ......."

      thats more like it

    5. JeffyPoooh Silver badge
      Pint

      "Assange™ wants to clear his name..."

      Well that's easy.

      Using your mouse, select the "™". Then press 'DELETE'.

      There, that nasty ™ has been cleared from his name.

  1. Anonymous Coward 101

    The sheer chutzpah...

    ...of this announcement takes the biscuit.

    Julian Assange is a prick of the highest degree.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Actually, he is obviously intent on creating a new degree in that area.

  2. JimmyPage Silver badge
    Flame

    OH FOR FUCKS SAKE

    Even if Assange were to be extradited to Sweden. HE COULD NOT BE EXTRADITED ON TO ANYWHERE ELSE WITHOUT THE EXPRESS PERMISSION OF THE UK.

    Although since that has been explained clearly, many times, I have no confidence anyone who doesn't already know it will correct their understanding.

    You can invent all sorts of black helicopter conspiracy scenarios whereby someone who at one point must have been the most recognisable man on the planet, mysterious appears in a US court, but real life is not a comic book.

    Assange is more at risk of being eaten by an arctic lion in Sweden, than of being extradited to the US.

    1. John G Imrie Silver badge

      Re: OH FOR FUCKS SAKE

      HE COULD NOT BE EXTRADITED ON TO ANYWHERE ELSE WITHOUT THE EXPRESS PERMISSION OF THE UK.

      And what makes you think the UK will lift a finger to protect a non UK national from a US Extradition order. We don't even protect our own.

      1. DougS Silver badge

        Re: OH FOR FUCKS SAKE

        I can't believe anyone could suggest with a straight face that the UK would refuse to extradite Assange to the US.

        1. mmeier

          Re: OH FOR FUCKS SAKE

          GB had 14 month to wrap him up nicely and send him to the Amis. He was in the UK, under UK house arrest. And - he was not shipped to whereever. Why?

          Lets face facts - the MEANEST thing the USA can do to Assi is - NOTHING!

          That's why he hates this recent news. Sweden did not go for a "Lex Lasagne" and prolong the time frame he could be prosecuted under. They just used due process and let it slip. Showing that for them Assi is just another petty criminal.

          My guess is within the next 12 month an SAS Jumbo will land in Sydney and the first thing leaving it will be Assange. If he behaved nicely on his own feet and after the stairs have arrived. If not with a helping hand from Bjorne and Agneta for a belly landing on the tarmac. After that he'll start a new career as a laughing stock for his paranoia with an option for alcoholism.

          Then, a few years later, the CIA can drown him in a billabong and all the news will report is "wino drowned in an accident"

        2. LucreLout Silver badge

          Re: OH FOR FUCKS SAKE

          @DougS

          I can't believe anyone could suggest with a straight face that the UK would refuse to extradite Assange to the US.

          Of course we wouldn't. We wouldn't have before he allegedly raped a number of women. We wouldn't have before he jumped bail. And we won't when he eventually gets his fat arse off the couch.

          Sweden has nothing to do with that. The sole reason he is hiding in the embassy is because he wants to deny the women he allegedly sexually assaults their day in court.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: OH FOR FUCKS SAKE

      "You can invent all sorts of black helicopter conspiracy scenarios whereby someone who at one point must have been the most recognisable man on the planet, mysterious appears in a US court, but real life is not a comic book."

      And only the evil Ruskies use Polonium.

    3. Medixstiff

      Re: OH FOR FUCKS SAKE

      "You can invent all sorts of black helicopter conspiracy scenarios whereby someone who at one point must have been the most recognisable man on the planet, mysterious appears in a US court, but real life is not a comic book."

      http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/06/13/cia_rendition_jet_was_waiting_in_europe_to_snatch_snowden/

      As the whistleblowing NSA sysadmin Edward Snowden made his dramatic escape to Russia a year ago, a secret US government jet - previously employed in CIA "rendition" flights on which terror suspects disappeared into invisible "black" imprisonment - flew into Europe in a bid to spirit him back to America, the Register can reveal.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: OH FOR FUCKS SAKE

        "You can invent all sorts of black helicopter conspiracy scenarios whereby someone who at one point must have been the most recognisable man on the planet, mysterious appears in a US court, but real life is not a comic book."

        http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/06/13/cia_rendition_jet_was_waiting_in_europe_to_snatch_snowden/

        As the whistleblowing NSA sysadmin Edward Snowden made his dramatic escape to Russia a year ago, a secret US government jet - previously employed in CIA "rendition" flights on which terror suspects disappeared into invisible "black" imprisonment - flew into Europe in a bid to spirit him back to America, the Register can reveal.

        Yes, and bizarrely, this FAR more public event yielded no reports of such activity. Funny that. Any more "evidence" you care to offer?

        The US has no interest in making Assange a martyr, but it behooves Assange to behave like they have because it pumps up his ego and still makes him interesting enough to write about. Not that whatever he utters is of any significance, it's more because plenty advertising can be served on people debating the twat.

        Or did you not notice that practically every report about him in certain papers have comments enabled? Ah, you missed it. Well, now you know. The only value this man has left is helping to sell advertising. A bit like the Kardashians or whatever they're called, but a heck of lot uglier and with (from what I hear) lower standards of personal hygiene.

  3. Little Mouse

    "Assange is still wanted in the UK for breach of bail conditions"

    I understand that Assange plans to escape once he gets his hands on a large bar of soap, some plastic explosive, and a dress.

    There's a huge network of Snufflegruff tunnels running under the Embassy, apparently.

    1. James O'Shea Silver badge

      Re: "Assange is still wanted in the UK for breach of bail conditions"

      Getting his hands on (the contents of) a dress was the problem in the first place.

    2. Unep Eurobats
      Alien

      +1 for the DR & Quinch reference

      "If these Snufflegruffs are so cute and cuddly, how come they dug such massive tunnels?"

      "I dunno. Maybe they're claustrophobic..."

      1. Neil Barnes Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: +1 for the DR & Quinch reference

        And another...

  4. casaloco

    Just to clear this up...

    Just to clear this up... he has previously offered to surrender himself to the Swedish government if they agreed NOT to extradite his to the US. They said yes, OK, promise.

    He then asked them to provide a written, signed, guaranty that he would NOT be immediately handed over to the Americans and extradited back to the US. The Swedish government back-tracked, said they couldn't provide such a document or any formal guarantees, but would he mind coming back to Sweden anyway?

    At this point it became clear to everyone with a brain that he was being set-up.

    1. JimmyPage Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Or alternatively

      The Swedish authorities decided to treat Assange like any other person of interest in a criminal investigation, and refused to allow him to dictate terms ?

      I know which I believe,.

    2. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: Just to clear this up...

      Bloody hell! Are people still peddling this shit? Have you guys never heard of the separation of powers? It's only basic political theory, not complicated, or new or anything...

      We have separate judicial systems for a bloody good reason! So that politicians can't pick and choose who gets tried and who doesn't. It's not perfect, but it's set up that way for a reason.

      And Assange is asking for a get out of jail free card, where he gets a guarantee of immunity from unspecified crimes he's not even been charged with. The legal advice given to a UK Minister would be that this would not be legal for them to do, as they have no legal power to give immunity. Also even if they gave such a guarantee, it would have no legal validity, and would be ignored by the courts.

      There is normally a right for the Home Secretary to use discretion in the case of extradition. But the last Labour government, in some bout of collective insanity, decided that in both the case of the posspoor US extradition treaty and the European Arrest Warrant, the Home Secretary would give up that power to protect out citizens. Sadly the coalition failed to correct this monstrous fuck-up, and so far the Conservatives haven't talked about it either.

      I don't know Swedish law. So don't know what their ministers can or can't do. Although I believe they have a standard block on extradition for "political crimes", so would be unlikely to extradite anyway. And of course with a European Arrest Warrant in place, Sweden would not be able to extradite without the permission of the UK courts as well.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Just to clear this up...

        Bloody hell! Are people still peddling this shit?

        Oh yes, and they will time and time again. I can't be bothered to spend too much time on Assange (on account of him being a huge waste of time and space to start with), but it would maybe be a good idea to summarise all the crap so it's just one post instead of half a forum peddling the same old BS.

        It does not matter how often you put the facts on the table, every f*cking time Assange shows up in the news you'll find the exact same claptrap and conspiracy theories posted again. Personally I would now actually *wish* they shipped him to the US and lock him up for a bit. If him and his idiotic followers are so desperate to play the martyr card, then let's do it proper and let him experience The Real Thing instead of the trumped up idiocy they're peddling, maybe that will end this nonsense.

        Alas, we have legal processes that prevent this. Shame.

  5. Greg J Preece

    The fun part of this rage-filled comment thread of hate is the presumption that he's guilty and hiding out from that, which conveniently ignores both that he was already in hiding when the allegations arose, AND this part of the article that you all seem to have missed:

    The former chief public prosecutor, Eva Finne told the BBC,"I don't think there is reason to suspect that he has committed rape."

    OK, former chief prosecutor, but someone who knows what they're on about says that there isn't enough evidence to prosecute anyway. Innocent until proven otherwise and all that, chaps? It's not like this whole thing could be a setup designed to discredit him and/or drag him out of hiding to somewhere he can be extradited...

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      He is indeed innocent. I have to say that he's innocent of these charges, because Swedish law says they have to be dropped, if you can successfully hide for 5 years. And I do believe in the rule of law. Although in the UK we don't run our system the same way, so the same trick wouldn't work.

      But the Swedes have a much more liberal judicial and penal system than us, and there's much to admire about how the Nordics go about running their societies.

      Of course that, and the fact that Assange said he was planning to seek permanent residency in Sweden, does rather undermine his claims about fearing that he's been set up by the evil Swedes to be fitted up for a crime he didn't commit without fair trial, then shipping off to the States. Given that he'd chosen to hang out in Sweden when he already claimed that the US were after him, and then chose to run to the UK - not a sensible place to be if you want to avoid Uncle Sam!

      So I am entitled to be of the opinion that everything he says is total bollocks. And that he's got a proven track record in this case of getting his lawyers to put out misleading statements, and has many loyal supporters willing to do the same.

      And no, he wasn't in hiding before all this blew up. He only went into hiding after the UK courts had finally blocked his final attempt to avoid being sent to Sweden to face the charges he'd already run away from. At which point he broke his bail, and fled to the Ecuadorian embassy.

      So he is entitled to the presumption of innocence. Which means I am very careful with my language. But, I am entitled to take a view on his actions too. And I find them rather objectionable. He came to my country, got a more than fair hearing from our courts, who ruled that there was at least enough evidence to answer to charges of rape, but obviously it wasn't their job to rule on how good that evidence was. Only that it was enough for charges under UK law. Then he abused our hospitality, and buggered off, costing us quite a bit of money to enforce the laws of the land.

      The only conclusions that I find that fit the data are that he's insanely paranoid, or that he's guilty. Admittedly the paranoia bit is quite likely, from everything I've read about him. But his attitude to women and what he's said about the charges could equally be interpreted to say that he's guilty as hell, and getting away with it.

      Although as he's voluntarily locked himself in a tiny embassy for years, "getting away with it" obviously isn't true.

      From a distance it's hard to know what combination of narcissim, his political beliefs, paranoia, publicity seeking and a weird childhood drives his actions. But he doesn't strike me as a particularly admirable human being. His supporters are often as self-righteous and annoying as he is. And I'm not all that convinced by Wikileaks. The Afghan war logs don't seem to have shown anything untoward, certainly I've seen nothing to justify the risk to the life of innocent Afghan locals of publishing them. Although I believe Julian Assange did say something like "they're informers, so fuck 'em". Which was nice...

      Anyway the 'Collateral Murder' video showed nothing of the sort, just the usual fuck up you get in warzones. Someone pointed a camera at a helicopter during a convoy escort operation, and got shot at. The initial version edited out the weapons that the party who were attacked were carrying too, not that those weapons were a reason to attack them, but the cockpit audio suggested that the crew thought they'd seen an RPG and so fired. They sounded more inexperienced, and a bit panicky, than malevolent.

      The diplomatic cables were interesting. I'm not sure they told us anything we didn't already know. It's hard to know whether they did more good (political transparency is worth something after all) than the probable slight harm to diplomatic communications - but I'm not sure they were worth Chelsea Manning going to prison for.

      1. Ben Tasker Silver badge

        Just to add to your frustration (it certainly added to mine) with Assange. From the BBC news story

        "There was no need for any of this. I am an innocent man. I haven't even been charged," said Mr Assange.

        In a story about how the case was being dropped because they hadn't been able to interview him in time, and Sweden's requiring the suspect to be interviewed so charges can be brought. Of course he hasn't bloody been charged, because he's quite successfully evaded the step required before charges can be brought......

        Although as he's voluntarily locked himself in a tiny embassy for years, "getting away with it" obviously isn't true.

        The Ecquadorian ambassador has also, presumably, been getting a bit of come-uppance for sheltering him (he's a bail-jumper so regardless of your beliefs on the other charges, it seems a fair term).

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          The Ecquadorian ambassador has also, presumably, been getting a bit of come-uppance for sheltering him

          Oh, I suspect that the after effects of this will linger for decades in any diplomatic effort. UK's FO is not going to let them forget this in a hurry.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        That video

        Anyway the 'Collateral Murder' video showed nothing of the sort, just the usual fuck up you get in warzones

        Actually, that video DID show something, but not about the warzone. It demonstrated that Wikileaks was not adverse to manipulating data if it suited them. At that exact point they lost credibility. When it comes to disclosure of what is, after all, stolen information (i.e. the result of a crime), impartiality is crucial to attain any sort of whistleblower/journalism defence, otherwise it simply becomes malicious.

        The clearest evidence of malicious intent came IMHO when WL threatened to "release all" if something happened to Assange. If I were a worried government I would have called them on this blackmail - better have it over at once and then ride out the storm. In 2 months, people would be talking about the Kardashians and the whole thing would have been forgotten. As a matter of fact, WL hasn't really released anything of note of late, all the attention has been on Assange desperately trying to drum up some new publicity, which thankfully failed.

  6. nexsphil

    Is there any point in having a comment section?...

    ....if the Reg is just going to allow it to be used for astroturfing in such a hilariously blatant manner? Don't be deluded that we can't see through it. This kind of thing makes you look like absolute shit.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: Is there any point in having a comment section?...

      Astroturfing for who? There's plenty of comments both for and against St Julian. Plenty of them from regular posters on here, who'd be going to an awful lot of effort if they were posting all their usual crap just a cover for the odd bit of shilling on behalf of Uncle Sam / the UK / Sweden / Space Lizards / whatever...

      I can confirm that my opinions (not very sympathetic to Assange) are entirely my own, and not paid for by anyone. If you can tell me where I can sign up to get paid decent money for posting any old crap online, please let me know. I might be tempted to quit my job, and sign up. So long as the hours are good.

      Otherwise, if you're going to accuse people of shilling, kindly come up with some sort of evidence, or at least argument. Put up, or shut up.

    2. Mark Exclamation

      Re: Is there any point in having a comment section?...

      @nexsphil, if you don't like this website, I think there are a few others around; perhaps you could go to one of those. No one is forcing you to visit and read here. Personally, I think El Reg is one of the best websites around!

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Swedish investigation into the rape accusation was dropped by the chief prosecutor one day after it started in August 2010. What does that tell you about the evidence? Then the publication of some steamy consular love letters and magically he became Sweden's most wanted.

    He might not be a nice person but that doesn't stop him being a victim of childish foot-stamping by the establishment.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      The Swedish investigation into the rape accusation was dropped by the chief prosecutor one day after it started in August 2010.

      Not all of it, only the part they had to drop because it's simply the law. This also suggest that the Swedish side of things is not about foul play, because in that cause they would have found some means to keep those charges going.

      What does that tell you about the evidence?

      It suggests they are clearly and strictly following the rule of law. Of course, that puts them at a disadvantage against someone who ignores any kind of personal accountability which must be frustrating, but they follow the law.

      He might not be a nice person but that doesn't stop him being a victim of childish foot-stamping by the establishment.

      He might not be a nice person, actually, no, we KNOW he's not a nice person (I'd call that an understatement), but he's also not special in any way. He must follow the law as much as we do, and not try to insist on some special treatment just because he has goaded others into disclosing government secrets and then not followed through on his promise of financial support.

  8. Killing Time

    Here’s an idea for the journo’s

    No one turn up for his next press conference, nobody phone him or his legal team to get the lowdown on his sad little drama. No one print the dissembling, dishonest and sanctimonious drivel that spews from him and his paid lackeys.

    Light a match under the faxes as they come into the various press offices he no doubt bombards with his self-serving crap and set a filter on incoming emails related to this subject straight to junk.

    Starve his ego of the ‘oxygen’ he requires to convince himself that he is relevant to this decade.

    Let the Ecuadorian's be his sole audience, them wanted him, let them listen to his BS, serves them right. They will either have tossed him out on the street or he will walk out like a lamb within twelve months…

    I know that this is unlikely in the UK but El Reg, why not set a precedent and lead by example? Be big for us....please?

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: Here’s an idea for the journo’s

      Do people still send faxes?

      Horrible, nasty things fax machines. I was very glad when email finally killed them. We killed our company fax number 3 years ago, I had one request to send us a fax about a year later - but haven't had anything since.

      1. Killing Time

        Re: Here’s an idea for the journo’s

        Re: Do people still send faxes?

        Sadly yes, though I have as little to do with them as possible.

        We have one in a murky corner which springs to life and disgorges what appear to be adverts every now and again, I think it's kept more for sentimental reasons really.

  9. ratfox Silver badge

    So is there a statute of limitations about skipping bail?

    I'm unsure if that is the case. IIRC, Roman Polanski would still be put in jail if he is ever caught in the US, almost forty years after sex with a minor. There is no statute of limitations that apply, not due to the nature of the crime, but due to the particulars of how he escaped after pleading guilty.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: So is there a statute of limitations about skipping bail?

      I don't think we have a statute of limitations on crimes in English law. I'm less good on the Scottish legal system.

      Civil matters usually have time limits, but I don't think there's anything even for minor crimes. Although the longer ago something is, the harder evidence is to produce.

      I remember there were a bunch of rape prosecutions and convictions in the 90s, based on the new ability to process DNA evidence. I think the police had a program where they re-opened unsolved cases where they still had physical evidence from the crime scene, from as far back as the 70s.

      1. Salts

        Re: So is there a statute of limitations about skipping bail?

        @I ain't Spartacus

        "I think the police had a program where they re-opened unsolved cases ...."

        It's called New Tricks :-)

        1. Fred Flintstone Gold badge

          Re: So is there a statute of limitations about skipping bail?

          It's called New Tricks :-)

          .. and the new series started off with a seriously good story in 2 parts!

          1. Salts

            Re: So is there a statute of limitations about skipping bail?

            @FF

            It sure did, that music for the start of episode one was very Sweeny ish as was much of the flash back and George Carter I mean Gerry Standing even alluded to it "Still got it", I know the timeline is out, but it made me smile, Dennis Waterman goes out where he came in*, many years on, Diamond Geezer:-) A John Thaw cameo(alas not possible) would have been the icing on the cake.

            Or maybe I read to much into it, nostalgia can do that to you, but what the hell, bloody good double episode!

            *yes I know he was around before the Sweeny :-)

    2. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Re: So is there a statute of limitations about skipping bail?

      No.

      Contempt of court is one of the things that will never expire, and has quite significant consequences - especially when apparently pre-meditated.

  10. Dave Stevens
    Thumb Up

    Tell all book incoming

    Easy way to clear his name an make a buck on the side.

    1. Richard 26

      Re: Tell all book incoming

      He's already done that but had a falling out with his publishers, so is almost unique in having an unauthorized autobiography.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    His biggest mistake was that he went to the wrong embassy.

    The UK doesn't extradite Rwandans, even when they're suspected of crimes against humanity. The Chilean embassy, cough Pinochet, might have been another good choice...

    When the UK authorities are prepared to spend as much on capturing a bail jumper as they have on stopping illegal international immigration, you know that, unless they're just being personal and vindictive (which is normal British justice BTW for people they don't like), there's more to it than they're admitting.

    Maybe if he'd done something really heinous, he'd be above the law...

  12. Steven Roper

    Statute of limitations?

    I always thought that the statute of limitations only applied if you weren't wanted in connection with a crime. For example, if you steal someone's car and nobody knows it was you, then after a time you can't be charged for it. But if you steal the car and the police want to question you about it, then simply evading the police for that time doesn't invoke the statute, because you were a person of interest from the start.

    At least that's how I thought it worked. Otherwise you'd have criminals of all stripes hiking it off to sketchy countries for however long knowing they can return with impunity after the statute time is up, which would make a mockery of any justice system.

  13. JaitcH
    Thumb Up

    Sweden's statute of limitations on prosecuting rape allegations is 10 years.

    Sounds sensible.

    Of course, UK Plod, unable to handle current crime, has been busy locking up aged entertainers who are collecting their pensions.

    How can justice be done of the expiration of 40 or 50 years?

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge

      Re: Sweden's statute of limitations on prosecuting rape allegations is 10 years.

      Perhaps the victims of the aforementioned pensionable age entertainers might feel differently, even though it was 'a long time ago'.

  14. SolidSquid

    I guess he should be blaming his lawyer then. After all, it was admitted during the high court challenge to the extradition that his lawyer at least knew that he was going to be questioned on additional charges before they left the country

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