Swedish Supreme Court Justice Calls Assange Case “a Mess”
Posted by Charles II on July 26, 2013
This is from April, but I don’t think many people are aware of it except at the most superficial level. To be clear, Swedish Supreme Court Justice Stefan Lindskog is not saying Assange is innocent or shouldn’t be prosecuted, only that the handling of the case has been horrific. And he makes it clear that he’s working not from established facts but from what he found out on the Internet. Further, he’s not speaking for his colleagues, so it’s not an official position.
* Justice believes there are not any formal US charges against Assange.
* He presents the case from the point of view of the Swedish police report obtained from–if I understand him correctly– leaked Polish [intelligence?] documents (!9:00ff)
* The leaking of the police report was a crime.
* The leaking was not prosecuted because of the privilege granted to sources of the press.
* Assange was defamed in the press.
* Hypothetically, if the women have told the truth, the case is entirely based on the use of condoms. How legally binding was that conditionality?
* Would a lie about a condom be charged as a sexual crime? If one lies about having HIV, no. It’s charged as assault.
* Two courts have held that there’s probable cause for sexual molestation (I believe this is also called “minor rape“).
* Swedish law forbids extradition for political offenses or if there is a reasonable fear that someone could be punished for political offenses as a consequences.
* The UK court did not try the merits of the case against Assange.
* Extradition to US: extradition is only possible if Swedish courts would charge the offense.
* It is debatable whether Swedish law would regard Assange’s leaks as treason or espionage
* Source privilege is protective only for business secrets, not military secrets.
* Still, Sweden’s enemies may not be America’s.
* Justice must not only be done, it must also be seen to be done.
While Lindskog is not speaking officially, for him to speak suggests the case is disintegrating. This is corroborated by the fact that prosecutor Marianne Ny has been displaced by another “investigator.” Also Anna Ardin fired her lawyer.
I don’t see any other way to understand Lindskog’s speech but as a statement that the prosecution of Assange is essentially baseless.
For the record, here are the finding of the UK Supreme Court on the agreed-to findings.
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