back to article UK Home Sec kick-starts US request to extradite ex-WikiLeaker Assange

UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid revealed this morning that he has signed papers to have Julian Assange extradited to the US. Speaking on BBC radio earlier today, Javid said: "There's an extradition request from the US that is before the courts tomorrow but yesterday I signed the extradition order and certified it and that will …

  1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

    Is this actually a news story? I'm no expert on the legal process, but it doesn't look like the Home Sec has actually made a decision at all. He's just OK'ed the case to proceed to court. His final decision is after the court case and inevitable appeals have finished.

    1. teknopaul Silver badge

      You gotta love a legal system where one politician makes the law.

      1. Saruman the White

        He is not making the law up. He is following the procedures laid down by the law as it currently exists.

      2. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        teknopaul,

        No politician makes the law here. Other than the MPs who voted for it 15 years ago. Extradition has a political element. Which is basically allowing politicians to block extradition if there's a reason to - the Home Secretary doesn't have the power to make anything happen or cause anybody to go to prison, but they do have the power to stop the whole process. Which is a good thing in my opinion - and in both the cases of the US extradition treaty and the European Arrest warrant system - I woulld argue that we've taken too much power out of the hands of politicians to stop foreign courts from gaining access to our citizens.

        Also, in these cases, the Home Secretary is acting in a quasi-judicial role, which means that their decision is subject to lots of legal process that they, and the civil servants advising them, have to strictly follow - or their decision will be subject to judicial review.

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Presumably if he weren't okay with this then he could save everyone time and money and reject it now.

      1. Gordon 10 Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Thats not the way politics works. We have to been seen by the Yanks to following due process.

        Besides given Javiid is cut from the usual Home Sec cloth (ie he's had the raving authoritarian fascist implant installed just like his predecessors), there is no certainty he would reject the request at *any* point.

        1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

          Is it where they install that implant that causes the ridiculous power pose on the first day?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            .. and the squeaky voice to offset it, just to demonstrate that karma has a sense of humour.

            :)

        2. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
          Boffin

          @Gordon10 It would be due process.

          Yes he could reject the extradition outright.

          That would be a 'due process' outcome.

          The only issue is why would he do that?

          There's evidence that he did commit the criminal act. Then there's his antics that cost the British Government millions in overtime for police monitoring the embassy.

          So forcing this to go through the appeals process is the right thing. It will not be a show trial but one where the US will show their cards.

      2. SundogUK

        At this point it's a point of law, not the Home Secretaries opinion. If he refused now there would likely be an appeal and he would lose.

    3. steviebuk Silver badge

      But surely he could of rejected it and said no. Sweden first. Or is he just bending over backwards for Trump.

      1. IGotOut

        You can say many things about Javie, but one thing he is not is a fan of Trump.

      2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        It seems the Swedes have backed out if you read TFA. He should have stayed there in the first place if he really wanted to avoid the US. Maybe he just wanted to avoid doing time in Sweden.

      3. dizwell

        Have. He could *have*. He could not "of rejected" anything.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Hey a pedant.

          Nobody cares mate but you and anyone else who knows it's a mistake.

          The rest of us don't care whether you care - we know what he meant.

          1. phuzz Silver badge
            Headmaster

            The thing is mate, that most people here work in IT, where getting so much as the wrong case for a single letter in a command can cause problems, so yes, we're all pedants here. So much so that there's an icon for when one is being pedantic >>>>>>>>

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              You miss the point. In this case, it doesn't matter. It really doesn't.

              Unless you're arguing for people digging their heels in over trivia, for no other reason than to claim they're right and everyone else is wrong. Which would be pathetic.

              But these days, with all the suppressed hate, not surprising :(

              1. werdsmith Silver badge

                Hey AC,

                Quit with "the rest of us" and "nobody".

                You speak only for yourself.

                The GCSE examiners care, teachers care, and when this prevailing influence finds its way onto English exam papers it costs. So some people do care.

                I understand that it's fashionable to be dumb and thick is the new clever innit mandem, but it's not all about you.

      4. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
        Boffin

        The interesting thing is that Sweden could argue that they get first bite at him.

        The law gets a bit murky on this because there is a single count of rape that they can charge him. Does that take priority over the US? Maybe. So then what happens? Even if the US loses in the UK (doubtful) they will get additional bites at him in Australia where he would have less of a chance to win an appeal.

        And this isn't bending over for Trump.

        The indictment against him was during Obama.

        1. Claverhouse Silver badge

          There's no real difference in substance between Trump and Obama.

          There are cosmetic differences in style. And the grovelling fawning to Obama by all the press was replaced by utter hatred towards Trump to stop him implementing anything; not even because of their distaste for Trump, but because of that deep burning hatred of the American Peeple who chose Trump disobeying the direct orders the Press gave to these inbred ingrates, the American Media has. Also, compared to Big Chief Sit-On-Hands, Trump's policies, however base and vile, are crafted to stand, whereas Obama's name was writ in water.

          However, as with the comment above on Home Secretaries, eventually all new presidents go into the same mould, and end up pursuing the same ends as their handler's force them to.

    4. This post has been deleted by its author

    5. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Judicious Shenanigans .....

      If Julian is leading defence counsel, is not every shred of evidence in the prosecution required by law to be shared directly to him, in order to ensure a true defence against every form of attack?

      He then shares with supporting counsel.

      It would also give him something constructive/destructive to do. Another Chance to Defend Actions against Consequences for Benefits to the Greater Good.

      He is allowed such an accommodation surely? Anything less would be to call everything out as a sham with mickey mouse show trials in the pipeline. Not a great plan that one.

      1. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge

        @A Man From Marse Re: Judicious Shenanigans .....

        If Julian is leading defence counsel, is not every shred of evidence in the prosecution required by law to be shared directly to him, in order to ensure a true defence against every form of attack?

        Huh?

        Not during the appeals hearing.

        The evidence is taken at face value.

        Also the US can claim some of the evidence to be classified.

        The UK courts may or may not agree and then there's a way of handling this.

        When you have classified material, IIRC there needs to be a special counsel for defense to see and handle the secure information.

    6. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
      Boffin

      @Spartacus ...

      You are correct.

      The reason its a news story is that he could have blocked it rather than let it move forward.

      What many don't understand is that the US have to make all of their claims against Assange now. Even if they drop the charges when he is extradited. Some legal analysts here in the states wrongly concluded that the US overplayed their hand. This is typical of lawyers to sue everyone they can and let the case shake them out.

      This was a long time in the making.

      Assange hired a defense attorney to shadow Manning's trial. Now we know why.

      During Manning's Article 32 hearing, evidence came to light that Assange assisted in the theft. It never went to trial (court martial) because Manning plead guilty to those charges.

      So there is evidence if taken to be true is enough for the extradition.

      Because Manning didn't get the death penalty. Assange will be hard pressed to argue that point as a way to stop extradition. Manning will have his chance for appeals, but it will end up like his last one.

    7. opaque

      Some people think the process shouldn’t be happening atall. This is a story for those people to show they are wrong

  2. A Non e-mouse Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Sweden

    I'd like to seem him stand trial for the sexual assault charges in Sweden.

    1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      Re: Sweden

      I would rather face charges of sexual assault in Sweden than any custodial charge in the US.

      1. _LC_ Bronze badge
        Alert

        Re: Sweden

        "I would rather face charges of sexual assault in Sweden than any custodial charge in the US."

        That could be funny.

        It is all about a broken condom. The woman claims he did it on purpose, while he says that it was an accident.

        Now here's where it becomes really interesting: The woman gave 'the broken condom' to the prosecution. They couldn't find her DNA, nor did they find his. That didn't stop them, however...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Sweden

          Whenever the US decides somebody is an enemy, suddenly they all are sexual perverts.

          So highly suspicious.

          1. Mark 85 Silver badge
            Gimp

            Re: Sweden

            Whenever the US decides somebody is an enemy, suddenly they all are sexual perverts.

            So they found his stash of whips, chains, and fine leathers??

            1. BebopWeBop Silver badge

              Re: Sweden

              Of course, hidden at the back of Bolton’s closet. Apparently Assange stashed them there.

        2. Lee D Silver badge

          Re: Sweden

          I'd like to know how you think they obtained a sample of his DNA to test if his DNA was on the items, as you've alleged.

          I can find no reputable link that mentions any nonsense like that. In fact, they *think* they found his DNA on one of the condoms from the other women - but they can't confirm without a DNA test. Hell, the other one could have just been the wrong one pulled out of the bin.

          If he's that innocent, it'll all come out in court, she'll be made a fool of, end of story. Hell, if it was *that* much a cover-up all that nonsense you spout wouldn't be out in the public domain, would it?

          P.S. DNA is far from infallible.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Sweden

            P.S. DNA is far from infallible.

            Likewise for rape allegations by all accounts.

          2. _LC_ Bronze badge
            Flame

            Re: Sweden

            "I'd like to know how you think they obtained a sample of his DNA to test if his DNA was on the items, as you've alleged.

            I can find no reputable link that mentions any nonsense like that. In fact, they *think* they found his DNA on one of the condoms from the other women - but they can't confirm without a DNA test."

            ------------

            You Sir are babbling out of your rectum. That is, unless you are trying to belittle "The Register", calling it a non-reputable source:

            https://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/09/17/assange_case_police_report/

            "The case against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange may be on the brink of collapse following claims from the defence team that the central piece of evidence used in the case does not contain Assange’s DNA.

            According to details that have emerged in a 100-page police report submitted after witnesses were interviewed and forensic evidence had been examined, the condom submitted for evidence by one of the key alleged sexual assault victims does not contain Assange’s DNA.

            Assange’s legal team have alleged that the lack of conclusive DNA evidence suggests that fake evidence may have been submitted and is calling the entire process into question. ..."

            1. Nick Kew Silver badge

              Citation Needed

              Whether the Reg is a reputable source is not relevant here. Just look at what it's reporting. It's not claiming what you say as facts, merely as claims. The purpose of a trial would be for a Court to test those claims against others that may contradict them. That's why a court hears from both sides before reaching a decision!

              1. _LC_ Bronze badge
                Angel

                Re: Citation Needed

                You love to twist words, but aren't really that capable, I presume.

                "I can find no reputable link that mentions any nonsense like that."

                That was the claim. I responded. You made up some more horse s...

                1. Nick Kew Silver badge

                  Re: Citation Needed

                  I'd've posted in response to your first wild assertion, but discussion seemed to have moved on from there before I saw it.

                  Whoever wrote the words you quote was pursuing a different line of argument, not relevant to my point: none of the claims on either side have been tested in court.

                  1. werdsmith Silver badge

                    Re: Citation Needed

                    Broken condom was one incident.

                    Second one was him penetrating a sleeping woman whilst bareback, when her ex boyfriend stated that there is no way the woman would ever contemplate consenting to bareback, it was unthinkable to her.

        3. Brangdon

          Re: It is all about a broken condom.

          Not all. He's also accused of having sex with an unconscious woman, knowing she wouldn't have consented had she been awake.

    2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: Sweden

      Amusingly it's his refusal to make himself available to the Swedish authorities for interview that has prevented them from filing charges, and left the US with the priority claim. He truly is the author of his own misfortune.

    3. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: Sweden

      I agree. He should have gone to Sweden, and I don't approve of their judicial system having let him get away with hiding. Which seems to me, admittedly as someone very ignorant of Swedish due process, to be what's happened. Their Supreme Court ruled that continuing to pursue him when in the embassy was "disproportionate", and so forced the prosecutor's office to reverse the EAW. Which looks to me like endorsing his tactic of running away.

      I also don't approve of statute of limitations on rape cases. On minor crimes, I'm fine with it. But I don't see why we should reward criminals who successfully evade prosecution for a few years by letting them off if they can wait long enough. Seems rather tough on the victims. Although I admit that evidence gets less reliable as it gets older, so I can understand the reason for it.

      1. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge

        @Spartacus Re: Sweden

        Sorry mate, but only capital crimes don't have a statute of limitation.

        Unless of course there's a conspiracy of obstruction. Then the clock resets with each conspiracy act..

        I think the problem is that the Swedes can't try him in absentia.

    4. R3sistance

      Re: Sweden

      The whole reason Assange avoided the charges in Sweden to begin with is because Sweden will almost certainly hand him over to the US. The cases in Sweden were weak to begin with and are likely there as a method of the US to try to extradite him indirectly. Even if found guilty in Sweden, there is the likelihood that he would then be extradited to the US after.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Sweden

        The UK has always been more likely to hand him over to the US. This, together with the fact that there wasn't any extradition request in process when he painted himself into the corner of the embassy leads me to think it was just the Swedish charges he was avoiding.

        1. Mark 85 Silver badge

          Re: Sweden

          I think the UK just wants him out of the country. They've spent a small fortune watching the embassy plus dealing with all the fallout.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Sweden

            Re: "They've spent a small fortune watching the embassy"

            They've chosen to waste exorbitant amounts of tax payers money on police surveillance and then have the audacity to claim there's no money to tackle knife crime.

            When the budget is limited you have to cut your cloth accordingly. The overlords and masters have decided (on our behalf /s) that an enemy of the US is worth more than lots of knifed Londoners.

        2. DougS Silver badge

          Re: Sweden

          I totally agree, the idea that he had to hide from UK authorities to dodge being extradited to Sweden to avoid being extradited to the US is about the dumbest thing I've ever heard of!

          It would only make sense if the UK didn't have an extradition treaty with the US. Only an idiot would believe this excuse.

    5. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
      Boffin

      A non emouse Re: Sweden

      Here! Here!

      I don't think that he's not going to be going to Sweden.

      I think the US will get him after Sweden.

      I mean he could be tried and sentenced in Sweden (Assuming he's found guilty) and then while serving his sentence, be hauled to the US. ) While in US custody, it would still count as time served for his Swedish sentence.

      Its a mess and its all of Assange's own making.

    6. Claverhouse Silver badge

      Re: Sweden

      I'd like to seem him stand trial for the sexual assault charges in Sweden.

      I bet you would.

  3. mhenriday
    FAIL

    Oh, the irony !

    And in the meantime, large numbers of people in Hong Kong are protesting a bill on a restrictive extradition agreement between the local authority and (the rest of) China, while neglecting the fact that it does have such an agreement with the United States (Fugitive Offenders (USA) Order : Cap. 503 Laws of Hong Kong). Talk about the mote in one's neighbour's eye !...

    Henri

    1. ragnar

      Re: Oh, the irony !

      I mean, the US judicial system is a shit pit, but it's not China. I'd be protesting too.

    2. DougS Silver badge

      Re: Oh, the irony !

      Hong Kong has had an extradition agreement with the US for decades, so there isn't anything changing which deserves protest.

      Being extradited to China is a clear and present danger for Hong Kong citizens who aren't terribly fond of the Chinese government and have used their freedom in the past to make that known. Considering how people who make controversial statements on Chinese social media will sometimes "disappear" (not saying they are killed, probably just "re-educated" and strongly encouraged to stay away from social media in the future) I could see where people in Hong Kong would justifiably be worried.

      Will something you posted five years ago criticizing the Chinese president get you arrested? Nobody knows, but since Chinese repression has been increasing rather than decreasing over time I sure wouldn't want to be in a position where I had to either leave the country I'd lived in all my life or bet my freedom that they will ignore me.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Oh, the irony !

        "Will something you posted five years ago criticizing the Chinese president get you arrested? Nobody knows, but since Chinese repression has been increasing rather than decreasing over time I sure wouldn't want to be in a position where I had to either leave the country I'd lived in all my life or bet my freedom that they will ignore me."

        Sadly, for the people of Hong Kong, I suspect that is exactly the choice they will have to make over the coming years, or maybe decades. I think it unlikely that China is going to continue to allow the freedoms the residents have enjoyed to date. The clamp down will be gradual (as it has been so far) but unless there is a significant change in the Chinese political outlook, it will only get worse.

        1. James O'Shea

          Re: Oh, the irony !

          I suspect that the. populations of Taiwan, Singapore, and Vancouver are going to increase, and soon. Because you're right, the PRC will continue to remind the population of Hong Kong that the PRC is a _communist_ country, and that, like it or not, Hong Kong is a part of the country. And that all the 'one country, two systems' nonsense is exactly that: nonsense, mostly there not for Hong Kong's benefit but to try to lure Taiwan into the net. Taiwan ain't being lured, and the PRC is losing patience.

          1. DougS Silver badge

            Re: Oh, the irony !

            Most of the communism has been replaced by capitalism, but the one part of the former communist government that was kept and has been strengthened is the authoritarianism. Even if they wiped away the last vestigates of communism the situation wouldn't change for its citizens (other than the poorest and most vulnerable)

            Calling China communist in 2019 is just plain wrong.

            1. WolfFan Silver badge

              Re: Oh, the irony !

              They call themselves 'communist'. Are you saying that you know better than they do?

              1. DougS Silver badge

                Re: Oh, the irony !

                North Korea calls itself a "democratic republic", are you going to argue they are democratic? They aren't totally free market but they are far more of a free market economy than any other country that has ever called itself "communist".

                Anyway the point is that they are authoritarian, whether the underlying system is communist, capitalist or socialist doesn't matter - the problem people in Hong Kong have is with China's authoritarianism, not their remaining communism.

            2. James O'Shea

              Re: Oh, the irony !

              Authoritarian jackboot-to-the-head policies were always the heart and soul of communism. The PRC has got much worse as time has gone by, and they were pretty bad in the first place. (Hmm. What event in China is it, again, that we recently saw the 20th anniversary of outside of China but which passed unnoticed, officially, inside of China? They're _worse_ now...)

              1. DougS Silver badge

                Re: Oh, the irony !

                Pretty much every system tends towards authoritarism over time, the question is how much. How much more authoritarian is the UK today versus a century ago? The US today versus a century ago? How much worse will they each be a century from now?

                But yes, it isn't human nature to share "equally" amongst millions of people so you need an authoritarian infrastructure to support a communist government. Communism could work without requiring force in the size of a small town where you know everyone or at least know someone who knows them, but not a nation.

  4. NonSSL-Login

    Hardly a surprise

    Extradition to the US has likely always been the agenda and knowing that was the reason he holed himself up in the embassy anyway.

    When you are such a political hot potato as he is, every trick in the book is used by the governments involved.

  5. Empire of the Pussycat

    "Assange is understood to be claiming that he is a journalist"

    dumping unredacted details is not journalism, wikileaks was widely criticized by many reputable journalists and others for it's actions

    'But Stephen Aftergood, an anti-secrecy activist at the Federation of American Scientists, noted that WikiLeaks lately seemed to be surrounded by “a lot of melodrama.” He added: “When criticized, the standard WL response is to deny error, shift responsibility to someone else, and attack the critic. It does not inspire much confidence.”'

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-wikileaks-names-idUSTRE77U75A20110831

    fwiw i see no justification for extraditing him to the usa, this creeping extraterritoriality and it's craven acceptance by the uk goverment is a disgrace, but his claiming to be a journalist is utter nonsense

    1. teknopaul Silver badge

      Re: "Assange is understood to be claiming that he is a journalist"

      Have you seen "collateral murder"? That counts as journalism in my book. Any attempt to cover that up is just plain sick.

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        Re: "Assange is understood to be claiming that he is a journalist"

        teknopaul,

        I have seen "collaterol murder". That's the video that Wikileaks edited to remove the weapons that the alleged victims were carrying. Admittedly Wikileaks did eventually publish the unedited version, but they lost all credibility by doing that. There was no warcrime there anyway, because the journalist who got killed was with a group of armed people, which was who the helicopter engaged. The gunner shouts "RPG" when he sees the camera poking round the corner of the building, and that's why they fired, which was withing their rules of engagement. If you are a journalist on the front lines, that's unfortunately the risk you take.

        So Wikileaks edited the video to make the helicopter crew look guilty when they weren't. Admittedly they also left in the intercom comments, which were in pretty poor taste, but then these were people in a high stress combat environment - it's pretty hard to judge that behaviour unless you've been there. Proper journalism would be to get an experience war correspondent to tell you if that behaviour is normal.

        For example an ex US Marine that I know was hit by friendly fire in Afghanistan. And he says that as the first 1,000lb bomb hit near their bunker (and the second was about to hit it) the last thing he remembered was shouting, "They nuked us man! They fuckin' nuked us!" I'd say that line of dialogue came from an over-written action film, except I know it actually happened...

        To "add" to Wikileaks journalistic credentials, they also edited out the end of that video for 'Collaterol Murder', as they thought people would be bored. I once read an interesting piece by a US lawyer - who argued that if there was a war crime there, it happend at the end. I've not bothered watching it, but she said that it shows some of the armed people the helicopter crew had engaged going into a building, and the crew firing on the building. She argued that this would be a disproportionate use of force, as they didn't know who else was in that building - and they didn't know those people were going to attack, they might just be hiding. I'm not enough of a lawyer to know how that would stand up, it sounds more like a breach of rules of engagement than rules of war to me.

        1. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
          Boffin

          Re: "Assange is understood to be claiming that he is a journalist"

          I once read an interesting piece by a US lawyer - who argued that if there was a war crime there, it happend at the end. I've not bothered watching it, but she said that it shows some of the armed people the helicopter crew had engaged going into a building, and the crew firing on the building. She argued that this would be a disproportionate use of force, as they didn't know who else was in that building - and they didn't know those people were going to attack, they might just be hiding. I'm not enough of a lawyer to know how that would stand up, it sounds more like a breach of rules of engagement than rules of war to me.

          It would be hard to find guilt. They were already engaging the enemy and it would depend on the RoE.

          Breaching the RoE could be a court martial offense.

          There was more information... such as the reporters never told the US or their allies that they would be in the area. That's their mistake.

      2. Empire of the Pussycat

        Re: "Assange is understood to be claiming that he is a journalist"

        yes i have

        that has absolutely nothing to do with releasing the identity of sources

        i have explained this as clearly you lack the intellectual capacity to figure it out for yourself

    2. Hans 1 Silver badge
      Holmes

      Re: "Assange is understood to be claiming that he is a journalist"

      You are wrong, they DID redact, AND they shared the data with publications such as the Guardian in the UK.

      Unredacted cables were retrieved, but only because a Guardian journalist leaked access codes.

      https://www.dw.com/en/wikileaks-blames-guardian-unnamed-german-for-cable-leaks/a-15359380

      Assange was working newspapers across the world, that qualifies him as an investigative journalist.

      I do not understand how whistleblowing can be considered a crime. I do not understand how disclosing atrocities committed by armed forces can somehow be considerd bad!

      Icon: closes I could find to investigative journalist.

      1. Empire of the Pussycat

        Re: "Assange is understood to be claiming that he is a journalist"

        you are simply promoting the cover story wikileaks came up with to shift blame

    3. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
      Boffin

      @ Pussy Emperor Re: "Assange is understood to be claiming that he is a journalist"

      What constitutes as a journalist is pretty wide open. There are enough recognized journalists who would claim Assange is a journalists where he would have some protection from the NYT vs US Government (Ellsberg decision).

      But the main and more serious charge is that Assange did in fact assist with the break in.

      The other thing is that the US has to list anything that they could theoretically charge him with. So they do.

      I'm not sure that he could survive the charges or that Ellsberg would shield him.

      Because he's being charged with participating in the theft. The extradition is valid. The US will have to show evidence which has to be accepted at face value to be true. He's not going to be tried in the UK during his appeal.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    While he is a twat

    I am not convinced that he has actually committed any crimes that he should be extradited for. ((please keep him))

    1. Sir Awesome

      Re: While he is a twat

      Yeah, isn't extradition meant to return you to the country you were physically in when committing said crimes?

      1. T. F. M. Reader Silver badge

        Re: While he is a twat

        @Sir Awesome: "isn't extradition meant to return you to the country you were physically in when committing said crimes?"

        No. It's about sending you to the country where you are accused or convicted.

        Disclaimer: IANAL. Couldn't be bothered to do more than 1 minute of "research". But had to check - thanks for prompting.

    2. dcluley

      Re: While he is a twat

      I hope they do not extradite him to the states. I remember the days when the US courts resolutely refused to extradite IRA fugitives to the UK. I think we should operate the same policy.

      I have no problems if he is extradited to Sweden. Very different circumstances.

      1. DougS Silver badge

        Re: While he is a twat

        As a US citizen I'd be happy if you keep the turd. Whether or not he's guilty what's done is done and Wikileaks' reputation is so tainted the only way he ever gets any attention again is via a trial in the US. The worst punishment for narcissistic types like him is for everyone to ignore him.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Julian, you should have read Catch 22 before you started Wikileaks.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Love-McKinnin precedents ?

    We need to bear in mind the Us doesn't always get it's way. The two aforementioned "hackers" for a start.

    There was also a guy whose extradition was refused as the penalty the US had in mind was deemed to be a cruel punishment under the ECHR.

    Also the US will have to give assurances not to try as a death penalty case, or Assange stays here regardless. They really hate that.

    1. RayzorWire

      Re: The Love-McKinnin precedents ?

      Indeed - they just need to point to the inhuman treatment of Chelsea Manning to make the case that extraditing him would be tantamount to subjecting him to torture for the rest of his natural life.

    2. kain preacher Silver badge

      Re: The Love-McKinnin precedents ?

      The charges he faces do not carry a death sentence .

    3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: The Love-McKinnin precedents ?

      "or Assange stays here regardless"

      He's not one of ours so he can be sent to wherever he's a citizen of. Oz or Ecuador?

    4. Bernard M. Orwell

      Re: The Love-McKinnin precedents ?

      Out of interest, when was the last time the US executed a foreign spy?

  9. Stork Silver badge

    Is it only the "hacking" charges extradition request that is moving?

    AFAIR, that was the first and least on the US laundry list. I have not seen the heavier ones mentioned.

    As I see it, if the US get him there on only that charge it is a bit of a loss to them, as they will not be able to proceed with the others.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: Is it only the "hacking" charges extradition request that is moving?

      Sadly not. Accoring to the Guardian piece there were about 18 counts, with both the hacking and the stuff under the espionage act. I've no problem with him going down for hacking, if guilty - but since the US added those charges to their extradition request I'd personally like to see the Home Secretary refuse it.

      1. Stork Silver badge

        Re: Is it only the "hacking" charges extradition request that is moving?

        How does it work: are the charges looked at individually or as a package? IOW, can the answer be "yeah, you can try to do him for hacking but forget about the rest"?

  10. JaitcH
    WTF?

    Good Luck, The Extradition Agreement Was Negotiated By . . .

    that sad excuse for humanity David Blunkett and ended up as the UK–US extradition treaty of 2003.

    The U.S. embassy in London reports that, as of April 2013, 77 individuals have been extradited from the UK to the US. Of course France has extradited no one as it protects it's citizens.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: Good Luck, The Extradition Agreement Was Negotiated By . . .

      I believe the US have extradited more people here in that time than we've sent back to them. Not that I don't agree, it's a pisspoor excuse for a treaty, and we should cancel it and replace it with the perfectly fine previous one.

      But then I'd also cancel the European Arrest Warrant system. I've no problem with trusting the Swedish legal system, but I'm not so happy with some of the others. So I think our courts should get to assess the quality of the evidence first, and the Home Secretary have a veto as well.

    2. Vometia Munro

      Re: Good Luck, The Extradition Agreement Was Negotiated By . . .

      Oh, yeah, the same guy who also introduced the indefinite sentences thing so that people could be banged up for several times the maximum they should serve on the basis that they seemed a bit iffy. Rightly repealed under human rights legislation but sadly not retroactively so there are still thousands of people imprisoned under extremely dodgy legislation.

      "But I didn't mean it to do that!" wails Blunkett. It's impossible to say if he's genuinely that incompetent or just trying to evade responsibility for something he knew perfectly well was extremely wrong. Given his track record, both.

    3. DougS Silver badge

      France protects its citizens?

      So where would they stand on extraditing Assange who is not a citizen of any of the countries in question?

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    brexit means brexit

    sorry, it _is_ relevant. We stick a finger to Europe (now with Johnson's grin behind the finger), hence we need to stick our ass to the US and hopefully they'll appreciate it. In every possible segment, because, come on, now we have NO ace on the table. Other than a couple of crumbs, such as being "unsinkable", and a one-state sized piece of land for big US biz to rape. So, Assange goes west.

    p.s. independent courts?! Come on, when "future of the UK is at stake", etc, etc? We will see... I would hope, but I've already have none left.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: brexit means brexit

      bbbbbut rape is wrong!

      Oh, the irony.

  12. Caltharian

    Personally i think he should be sent to sweeden to face trial there and then be barred for life from re-entry to the uk

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Sadly the Swedish court appears to have told its prosecutors that they can only interview him with his permission - and that they can't have an arrest warrant, even though they had one before. Don't ask me why, I don't understand the Swedish system. The reports on that case in this country didn't say why the court ruled the way it did, so I guess our press know as little about the Swedish criminal justice system as me...

      What was the point of showing all those Scandi-noir detective shows on BBC2 - that's what I want to know!

      1. Killing Time

        'What was the point of showing all those Scandi-noir detective shows on BBC2 - that's what I want to know!'

        To make you think they are not all Hygge, Ikea and meatballs....

    2. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge

      Sent to sweden anyway, and leave it to them to decide what to do with the self centered plonker.

      At least it gets him off our hands.....

  13. DMcDonnell

    The Pentagon Papers

    When the US Government tried to suppress the publication of the Pentagon papers it didn't go so well. I see no difference in what the New York Times did in the 70's and what Assange did now.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pentagon_Papers

    And for the prosecution and possible conviction of Assange to stand the USSC would have to re-visit and overturn their decision, New York Times Co. v. United States.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_Times_Co._v._United_States

    1. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: The Pentagon Papers

      Oh you youngster...

      Lots of differences.

      First Ellsberg had legal access to the documents. He worked for RAND who was the defense contractor and these documents were given to him as part as his job. He also copied them and walked out of the office with them. Back then there was a lot more trust of the employees.

      Manning stole the docs. Assange allegedly assisted in the theft.

      That's a big thing.

      This is why Assange is in serious deep do do.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A journalist in Russia that often reported about corruption was recently arrested on trumped-up charges of drug trafficking.

    "[Ivan] Golunov received an unexpected wave of support. His incarceration became a test of solidarity among Russian journalists, who rallied to his defense. In front of the country and the world, they effectively dismantled the police narrative. Even some reporters in the state-run media stood up for Golunov. Eventually, the Russian Interior Ministry stepped in to order his release. The officers involved in his arrest have been suspended.

    https://time.com/5605456/russian-journalist-ivan-golunov-arrest/

    Good to see that (at least in Russia) journalists stand together in solidarity against oppression/corruption.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Trump's Law

    Doesn't matter whose law is followed in this country or anywhere else. If he gets extradited to the good ol' USA, the only law that will be applied is Trump's Law, in which case he doesn't stand a chance. He will be in the same boat as Manning - they will throw the book at him.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Whistleblowers are criminals and guilty of something

    They have no stinkin' human rights.

    Says every government on the planet.

  17. Big Al 23

    Justice delayed...

    ...is justice denied. Let's see how Assange does in a U.S. court.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Justice delayed...

      The court ruling will not mean anything. The only reason he will be found guilty is because of Trump and because he refused to tell the courts what his defence was as a matter of principle. Full of principals that hero is.

      So, we will have to trust him that he has never done anything wrong in his entire life, ever. I have read over and over again that all of the people saying otherwise work for the CIA. Dozens of comment spammers can't be wrong! Except the ones who work for the CIA, of course.

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