layman wrote:There is no doubt he skipped bail which is a crime.
The Breach of Bail Allegation Against Assange
The only legal issue generally thought to be outstanding for Julian Assange in the UK is a breach of bail conditions. However, a list circulated by Wikileaks to correct misconceptions has rightly stated:
“It is false and defamatory to suggest that Julian Assange has ever “breached his bail”, “jumped bail”, absconded, fled an arrest warrant, or that he has ever been charged with such at any time.”
In fact, bail is not actually breached unless there is a failure to meet bail conditions “without reasonable cause.”
This was mentioned in passing when Emma Arbuthnot ruled to uphold the arrest warrant for breach of bail:
“The offence of absconding by a person released on bail is set out in section 6 of the Bail Act. If a person who is on bail fails without reasonable cause to surrender he shall be guilty of an offence. On a straightforward reading of the section, which makes no mention of any underlying proceedings, 1. Mr Assange has been released on bail, 2. He has failed to surrender and 3. If he has no reasonable cause he will be guilty of an offence.”
The excerpt below from Page 2 of an earlier ruling from Judge Riddle ironically reflects the fact that there was indeed a reasonable cause and that the UK knew it. This reasonable cause was the universal human right to seek asylum, and it was exercised with unprecedented international notoriety. This was apparently not lost on whoever was directing the UK strategy, since it was a full nine days before his appearance was requested with a day’s notice at Belgravia Police Station, predictably followed the next day with an arrest warrant when he did not appear.
“On Tuesday, 19th June 2012 the police received notification that Mr Assange had presented himself to the Ecuador Embassy in London where he was claiming asylum. That same evening the police also received notification that Mr Assange was absent from his bail address. It is not in dispute that Mr Assange has remained at the Ecuador Embassy since 19th June. On Thursday, 28th June Sgt Humphries wrote to Mr Assange requiring him to surrender to the custody of police…
Mr Assange failed to surrender to police on 29th June 2012 at Belgravia Police Station at 11:30am, as required in the letters served on him. The same day a warrant for his arrest was issued at this court by Judge Purdy.” (emphasis added)
With respect to this summons, a statement from that day on the Wikileaks website mentions that “Mr Assange has been advised that he should decline to comply with the police request. This should not be considered any sign of disrespect. Under both international and domestic UK law asylum assessments take priority over extradition claims.”
Yet without such an arrest warrant, the UK would have no pretext to extract him from the embassy. Its awareness of lacking justification was then further shown by waiting another six weeks for Ecuador to fold under pressure to reject the asylum claim. Yet when it was finally obvious that asylum was about to be granted, they did in fact try their luck with a threat to revoke the diplomatic status of the embassy in order to arrest him.
That obviously did not work. Waiting so long and then overplaying their hand was a reassuring indication that their wits didn’t quite measure up to their malice. Yet what else could they do, since it was obvious that international law took precedence on the world stage when he walked into the embassy? They had to pick their means and their moments to defy it, and then hope for the best.
The UN Human Rights Council’s Working Group on Arbitrary Detention referred to the question of bail in its 2015 ruling by stating in section 64 that
“the EAW [European arrest warrant] issued by Sweden is the current formal basis for Mr. Assange’s detention, although United Kingdom police have been instructed to arrest Mr. Assange even if the Swedish EAW falls away. In this regard, Mr. Assange continues to face arrest and detention for breaching his house arrest conditions (“bail conditions”) as a result of successfully exercising his right to seek asylum. However the conditions of his house arrest arise directly out of Sweden’s issuance of the EAW.”
The EAW has since been dropped along with Sweden’s investigation, in 2017. Yet the same UN ruling from 2015 had already admonished Britain to let him leave the embassy without arrest.
So however sliced, this bail “issue” has no more substance than a hole missing its doughnut.
After seven years of underlying nonsense about Assange’s legal status from Western governments and media, the UN was moved in December to directly counter it with a sobering declaration:
“States that are based upon and promote the rule of law do not like to be confronted with their own violations of the law, that is understandable. But when they honestly admit these violations, they do honour the very spirit of the rule of law, earn enhanced respect for doing so, and set worldwide commendable examples.”
Julian Assange is under siege with his life threatened by the US, for publishing truth disseminated by major outlets.
He is not a fugitive from British or any other kind of justice.
layman wrote:The allegations in Sweden expired actually. They were not dropped. Those women are inconvenient for the usual crowd of keyboard crusaders though....
What actually took place:
John Pilger wrote:Less than 24 hours later, the Stockholm Chief Prosecutor, Eva Finne, took over the investigation. She wasted no time in cancelling the arrest warrant, saying, "I don't believe there is any reason to suspect that he has committed rape." Four days later, she dismissed the rape investigation altogether, saying, "There is no suspicion of any crime whatsoever."
Enter Claes Borgstrom, a highly contentious figure in the Social Democratic Party then standing as a candidate in Sweden's imminent general election. Within days of the chief prosecutor's dismissal of the case, Borgstrom, a lawyer, announced to the media that he was representing the two women and had sought a different prosecutor in Gothenberg. This was Marianne Ny, whom Borgstrom knew well, personally and politically.
On 30 August, Assange attended a police station in Stockholm voluntarily and answered the questions put to him. He understood that was the end of the matter. Two days later, Ny announced she was re-opening the case.
At a press conference, Borgstrom was asked by a Swedish reporter why the case was proceeding when it had already been dismissed. The reporter cited one of the women as saying she had not been raped. He replied, "Ah, but she is not a lawyer."
On the day that Marianne Ny reactivated the case, the head of Sweden's military intelligence service - which has the acronym MUST - publicly denounced WikiLeaks in an article entitled "WikiLeaks [is] a threat to our soldiers [under US command in Afghanistan]".
Both the Swedish prime minister and foreign minister attacked Assange, who had been charged with no crime. Assange was warned that the Swedish intelligence service, SAPO, had been told by its US counterparts that US-Sweden intelligence-sharing arrangements would be "cut off" if Sweden sheltered him.
For five weeks, Assange waited in Sweden for the renewed "rape investigation" to take its course. The Guardian was then on the brink of publishing the Iraq "War Logs", based on WikiLeaks' disclosures, which Assange was to oversee in London.
Finally, he was allowed to leave. As soon as he had left, Marianne Ny issued a European Arrest Warrant and an Interpol "red alert" normally used for terrorists and dangerous criminals.
Assange attended a police station in London, was duly arrested and spent ten days in Wandsworth Prison, in solitary confinement. Released on £340,000 bail, he was electronically tagged, required to report to police daily and placed under virtual house arrest while his case began its long journey to the Supreme Court.
He still had not been charged with any offence. His lawyers repeated his offer to be questioned in London, by video or personally, pointing out that Marianne Ny had given him permission to leave Sweden. They suggested a special facility at Scotland Yard commonly used by the Swedish and other European authorities for that purpose. She refused.
For almost seven years, while Sweden has questioned forty-four people in the UK in connection with police investigations, Ny refused to question Assange and so advance her case.
Writing in the Swedish press, a former Swedish prosecutor, Rolf Hillegren, accused Ny of losing all impartiality. He described her personal investment in the case as "abnormal" and demanded she be replaced.
Assange asked the Swedish authorities for a guarantee that he would not be "rendered" to the US if he was extradited to Sweden. This was refused. In December 2010, The Independent revealed that the two governments had discussed his onward extradition to the US.
Contrary to its reputation as a bastion of liberal enlightenment, Sweden has drawn so close to Washington that it has allowed secret CIA "renditions" - including the illegal deportation of refugees. The rendition and subsequent torture of two Egyptian political refugees in 2001 was condemned by the UN Committee against Torture, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch; the complicity and duplicity of the Swedish state are documented in successful civil litigation and in WikiLeaks cables.
"Documents released by WikiLeaks since Assange moved to England," wrote Al Burke, editor of the online Nordic News Network, an authority on the multiple twists and dangers that faced Assange, "clearly indicate that Sweden has consistently submitted to pressure from the United States in matters relating to civil rights. There is every reason for concern that if Assange were to be taken into custody by Swedish authorities, he could be turned over to the United States without due consideration of his legal rights."
The war on Assange now intensified. Marianne Ny refused to allow his Swedish lawyers, and the Swedish courts, access to hundreds of SMS messages that the police had extracted from the phone of one of the two women involved in the "rape" allegations.
Ny said she was not legally required to reveal this critical evidence until a formal charge was laid and she had questioned him. Then, why wouldn't she question him? Catch-22.
When she announced last week that she was dropping the Assange case, she made no mention of the evidence that would destroy it. One of the SMS messages makes clear that one of the women did not want any charges brought against Assange, "but the police were keen on getting a hold on him". She was "shocked" when they arrested him because she only "wanted him to take [an HIV] test". She "did not want to accuse JA of anything" and "it was the police who made up the charges". In a witness statement, she is quoted as saying that she had been "railroaded by police and others around her".
Neither woman claimed she had been raped. Indeed, both denied they were raped and one of them has since tweeted, "I have not been raped." The women were manipulated by police - whatever their lawyers might say now. Certainly, they, too, are the victims of this sinister saga.
Katrin Axelsson and Lisa Longstaff of Women Against Rape wrote: "The allegations against [Assange] are a smokescreen behind which a number of governments are trying to clamp down on WikiLeaks for having audaciously revealed to the public their secret planning of wars and occupations with their attendant rape, murder and destruction... The authorities care so little about violence against women that they manipulate rape allegations at will. [Assange] has made it clear he is available for questioning by the Swedish authorities, in Britain or via Skype. Why are they refusing this essential step in their investigation? What are they afraid of?"
Assange's choice was stark: extradition to a country that had refused to say whether or not it would send him on to the US, or to seek what seemed his last opportunity for refuge and safety.
http://johnpilger.com/articles/getting- ... told-story