Above Photo: Acidpolly/Flickr
He is facing a death sentence in the United States, anyway you measure it. He will never see Australian soil alive; he will be repatriated to Australia in a coffin if he first winds up in U.S. custody. There is no possibility of a fair trial there. My blog from Sept. 2018 outlines the judicial corruption in both Sweden and the UK. Since then, my hypothesis has been verified by emails publicly available on the UK’s Governmental site here.
Do new emails unmask political interference and collusion up to the highest levels of UK courts, including the UK Supreme Court in the Assange matter? Yes. Is the UK Supreme Court independent of political perversion from UK authorities all the way up to the Prime Minister, Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), Ministry of Justice and beyond? No. The UK tipped the scales of justice against him with prejudice and overt discrimination. He is not equal under the law in the UK. There is ample evidence for a Judicial Review should Assange’s legal team wish to pursue accountability from UK and Swedish authorities. Otherwise, Assange and his lawyers can expect more injustice, more prejudice and more corruption in order to streamline his illegal exit from the UK to the eager US authorities who have entrapped him extrajudicially over the past decade.
Redux: Assange challenged the proportionality of the extradition law, then the old disproportionate law was revoked and replaced. While that challenge was in court, the CPS held a large back log of cases in abeyance, then let those persons benefit from the revised law but not Assange. The revised law was not applicable retrospectively. It is no coincidence that Assange was the only case that fell outside the benefits of the revised law. He was excluded.
Britain’s Supreme Court was weaponized to incapacitate Julian Assange. The political interference in the UK Judiciary is the direct cause of his current torture, lack of legal access and due process. The UK’s CPS accelerated Assange’s EAW Swedish case and deliberately created a backlog of other EAW cases whose outcome depended on his matter being resolved negatively. The CPS manipulated the timing and order of Assange’s EAW case to dispense with him while it adjourned other cases so he would not be afforded protections under the revisions. This served the purpose of punishing Assange before any charges were laid or a guilt ascertained and circumventing his access to legally entitled protections. The “Assange exclusion clause” insertion is a problem for UK lofty ethical legal standards. The legal standards for him were uniquely inconsistent, unfair and disproportionate. When standard operating procedures don’t operate consistently the reason is political.
Such tactics must have been orchestrated at the highest level of government. When a law changed in Assange’s favour it did not apply to him; only to the other EAW cases that were adjourned pending the outcome of his case.This email authenticates the @UN’s decision that Assange’s detention was arbitrary. There is absolute certainty that the UK and Sweden conspired to hold scores of extraditions in abeyance pending Assange case, then denied him benefits.
“I should mention that the certified legal point has potentially far reaching consequences for scores of pending cases from, in particular, Estonia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Belgium and Greece.” (pg. 223) ~ CPS, UK.
The CPS rigged the case, stacked the deck, held a score of other extradition cases in abeyance while Assange’s legal challenge to UK extradition laws was in play. The CPS rigged the queue of extraditions to leave him behind, then wrote an exclusion clause which prejudicially targeted Assange. His name was not on the clause, but it is in that email.
The UK and Sweden colluded in a strategic campaign to detain then extradite Julian Assange, deny him due process and sabotage his chances of freedom. As a result, Assange and his legal team have faced one gross injustice after another. The UK has not acted impartially and thus robbed Assange of years of presumed innocence, health, freedom of movement, ability to communicate with the world and time with his children and family. His reputation was obliterated and his support base was severely restricted.
It is astonishing that Assange is trapped inside a maximum security prison, under extreme conditions which deprive him of his human and legal rights, because a supposed democracy refuses to allow safe passage out or provide assurances he won’t be extradited to the US.
It’s clear that Assange’s arbitrary detention has nothing to do with laws, habeas corpus, guilt or innocence or due process but has everything to do with the UK’s subversion of justice. For anyone to say that his incarceration has been self-imposed or that “he could walk out at any time” to “face justice” in light of these emails would be nothing short of delusional. He was kettled by police using a tactic that surrounds and threatens him but publicly claims that he is free to leave. Why is Assange being incarcerated without charge in conditions that amount to torture and why did the UK insist on arresting him if he leaves the embassy? Here is what Judge Lady Arbuthnot said:
“62. Having weighed up the factors for and against and considered Mr Summers’ arguments I find arrest is a proportionate response even though Mr Assange has restricted his own freedom for a number of years. Defendants on bail up and down the country, and requested persons facing extradition, come to court to face the consequences of their own choices. He should have the courage to do so too.”
But that has been the UK government’s carefully constructed narrative all along. The UK portrays Assange as evading justice when in fact it thwarted every effort to advance the case; not only for him but for the two Swedish complainants. Why is he detained without charge for 10 suffocating years based on a nullified EAW and associated bail conditions?
These emails confirm the UK intentionally undermined Assange’s legal and human rights, specifically targeting him for political revenge. For the better part of a decade he has suffered conditions of torture, lost income for his publishing and public speaking work, lost friends to death but not been allowed to attend funerals, lost precious years with his children who have grown up without him and denied access to urgent medical care. The UK should be held responsible. His losses are immense. He is the only Western journalist held as a political hostage in a supposedly democratic country. ~Jude Fleming
FINDINGS FROM FOIA TRIBUNAL:
a. Wikileaks is a “media organization”.
b. There were no more documents to disclose. The emails associated with lawyer Paul Close, CPS account were deleted as the Guardian reported. c. The ICO argued that it was not in the public’s interest to disclose more material with the concern it might compromise relations with other nations, then withheld valuable information which we can partially see now. In fact it is in the public’s interest to find out what went on behind the scenes and reveal a perverse cover-up.
SALIENT POINTS FROM SWEDISH FOIA EMAIL ARCHIVE
The debate over the application of the Assange EAW had “gone into hyperspace” precisely because there were other pending EAW cases which would be affected by the outcome. As shown above, the CPS was piling up unresolved extradition cases pending the outcome of Assange’s challenge to the proportionality of his case in Sweden.
Of specific concern, the CPS deliberately excluded Julian Assange from benefitting when the UK revised its extradition laws (2014) wherein Britain no longer enforces EAW’s against persons who have not been formally charged with a criminal offence. The law was revised to be proportionate based on presumed innocence concerning an EAW suspect. If a person was not formally charged with an offense they could not be extradited to another country. The Assange case was pivotal in bringing about this legal revision yet he was prejudicially excluded. If the revised legal precedent were to have been applied to his case it would have allowed him to leave the UK but an exclusion clause was applied retrospectively. The UK actually delayed other EAW cases until the Assange matter was (pre-)determined then engineered a phrase to prevent Assange from benefitting. The Assange Exclusion clause limited the application of the revised law to ongoing or pending EAW cases and not those which had concluded/deemed “valid”. Had his case been addressed impartially his EAW case would have been determined based on the new legal precedent which considered proportionality (ie. UK will not extradite an un-charged person to another country especially when other methods of interview are available through Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) European protocols).
“The SC (Supreme Court) will know that the outcome will have an impact on numerous current pending EAW cases, no matter what. Cases are being adjourned regularly pending the outcome in Assange.” (Paul Close, CPS)
If the US had its way, Assange would have been extradited by UK authorities and transferred to US custody by now. But so far that hasn’t happened. Assange is now in a maximum security prison without the tools and access to persons to defend himself. He is among murderers, rapists, frauds and violent offenders. He is a nerd: a publisher, author, commentator, researcher and global teacher. The truth is Assange is not a fugitive. He is a mouse in a mouse trap; skilfully designed and set by UK and US authorities. He is a caged person, being held in inhumane, tortuous conditions like an exotic pet or a political trophy.
The UK contorted due process, rewrote laws, denied FOIA disclosures and prevented Assange from defending himself in Sweden or benefitting from revised laws in the the UK. Legal remedies for his case were exhausted but were done in such a manner as to undermine his access to justice. Therefore, the case is a political, not simply legal. Assange is a political prisoner. He is not a “fugitive of justice“, he is a victim of UK abuse of power. Assange had “reasonable cause” to enter Ecuador’s embassy as an asylee because he sought protection from inevitable extradition to the United States with a stop-over in Sweden.
“Assange has been kept like a caged exotic pet by the UK, likely on behalf of the US.” ~ Jude Fleming
The original EAW concerning him should have been dismissed as a political extradition, based on Section 13 of the UK Extradition Act which outlines conditions barring extradition of a person based on political opinions, but it was not. The United Nations condemned both Sweden and the UK for Assange’s prolonged arbitrary detention. The UK rejected the UN’s ruling, continues to flout his human rights and due process and insulted the UN’s expert panel. It conflated a minor bail infraction, he served a 50 week sentence and should have been released on bail September 2019.
Conflating bail breach is in keeping with the underhanded methods to strategically incapacitate Assange for an EAW which is no longer in effect for a non existent charge. Arbuthnot’s ruling juxtaposes a bail infraction with a man’s reasonable cause to fear for his life and liberty. Seeking asylum is not a crime. It was an inconvenience for the CPS. Arbuthnot’s ruling was an effort to reactivate an EAW that was formally withdrawn by Swedenyears ago.
In the words of Vivienne Westwood, the UK has abused its judicial powers in a “Mis-Rule of Law”, whereby the UK bent the normal application of law in order to exclude him from justice.
Assange was and is being given “special treatment” in the eyes of UK law which was adaptable and as fluid as a UK justice system would permit. Previous emails retrieved by Maurizi show that nothing about the case was/is typical and everything has been “done at break neck speed”. The UK has not applied law equally, fairly or without bias.
Assange is withstanding exponentially disproportionate punishment for allegations(s) which produced no charges or convictions. If this were a board game, it could be called:
“Mis-Rule of Law, the Assange Edition.“
It’s like playing a board game with a compulsive cheater who makes up the rules, subject to change on a whim, without notice but always in the favour of the cheater-liar. The UK’s consistent tactical approach has been to undermine Assange’s legal and human rights, wage a public relations campaign that put its conduct in a noble light and brands Assange as a cowardly criminal. Its histrionic disregard of the United Nations ruling is unpacked in full by Liora Lazarus.
IMPLICATIONS: Legal and Human Rights
Britain’s Supreme Court was weaponized to incapacitate Julian Assange. The political interference in the UK Judiciary is the direct cause of his current torture, lack of legal access and due process. Any condemnation or damage that arises from scrutiny of these emails is well-deserved. The UK’s international reputation and that of Her Majesty’s Government, (HMG) should not be more important than the life of a publisher and servant of the Global Public.
The UK has been caught in unethical and prejudicial behaviour toward Assange by pre-empting his extradition case resolution then excluding him from legal protections. Emails from Paul Close demonstrate the strategy for forcing Assange to stay in the UK. Delay the case. Prolong detention. Confuse the story. Coordinate press release with Sweden to advance a libellous version of events. Modify and improvise laws on an as-needed basis. Deny Assange any benefits that would logically apply to him after a law is revised. Every legal effort to challenge prejudicial treatment was sabotaged right up to the UK Supreme Court. Look again. Paul Close was quoting a source from higher up in the UK government below:
Who was involved in the steering of the UK Supreme Court decision? Look at the email addresses in the above email. It was a “whole of government” effort to subvert justice: SOCA, Metropolitan Police in London, and FCO.
How intact is UK justice system? Can anyone trust UK justice now? Certainly not Assange nor his legal team. How far does UK CPS have to deviate from usual application of justice before it is glaringly obvious that it is no longer a legal deadlock but a political one requiring a political solution? It should also signal a pressing need for the UK to return to rule of law, due process, habeas corpus, presumption of innocence and restoration of Assange’s fundamental human rights.
Should the UK face criminal charges under the Conventions Against Torture which are litigated on an international basis? Yes.
In the battle for information, or control over it, Assange is a prime target for governments who want to restrict the public’s access. The culture of secrecy serves as an invisibility cloak for more abuse of power and corruption. Governments who oppose increased access to information have intentionally and strategically incapacitated Julian Assange for 10 years.
ASSESSING PRESENT DANGER
Assange’s greatest adversary is the US who wants to prosecute him for revealing materials which serve the public good but compromise official secrecy (of governments, corporations and persons). His work as a journalist, publisher, author and public speaker functions to empower those who need protection and challenge those with too much power who then abuse it. Consequently he is at the apex of US revenge operations. The US is a dangerous place for him. There is no limit to its appetite for power and dominance. US revenge fantasies would not be fulfilled were Assange to be killed; in order to exact the concentrated revenge the US Empire wants, it must comprehensively destroy him, his associates and his legacy. It must keep him alive so he can suffer under the full weight and strength of US “justice”. Assange had asylum in Ecuador’s embassy to protect him from being extradited to the US where it is certain his human and legal rights will be abused. The UK’s abuse of power thus far is but a mild foreshadow of what awaits him should he ever be extradited for prosecution in the US.
It is possible that the United States is exerting pressure on countries to cooperate with its goal to get him into custody to face US extradition and prosecution on US soil. The US may claim the “right to hot pursuit” with respect to Assange as a high priority target and coerce nations to manipulate their legal conduct to advance this goal. Based on the information in CPS / SPA emails it is possible that UK is exacting political revenge either independently or in concert with the US. It will go to almost any length to incapacitate Assange despite the fact that he had not been charged with any offence in any country up until May 2019. Let’s not forget the UK almost stormed the embassy to apprehend Assange. It was an overblown reaction given that he absconded bail, it was a police matter and should not have compromised the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic premises.
Given the UK’s treatment of the 2010 EAW against him it’s highly probable the US extradition proceedings would escalate to the Supreme Court and he would lose. Neither he, nor his legal team, nor global citizens can reasonably hope that any US extradition proceedings would be handled impartially. He has no basis to trust UK justice. He would eventually be extradited to the US based on a repeated version of “Misrule of Law”. He wouldn’t have a hope in hell: hellish incarceration, hellish torture and hellish US version of hellish corruption all delivered with hellish might.
The US Version of “Misrule of Law, Assange edition” would outshine the UK version with the power and polish of a seasoned, sociopathic military dictator.
NEXT STEPS FOR ENSURING JUSTICE FOR ASSANGE
- The UK must drop the extradition case against Assange. It is not obliged to enforce a politically motivated disproportionate legal request from the US which would certainly result in his death either in Belmarsh, on UK soil or in the U.S.. Assange must be released and granted safe passage. At the very least he must able to be granted bail with unimpeded legal and computer access.UK Courts must review earlier legal decisions and correct the record. No one is above the law, including UK Prime Ministers.
2. ASSANGE MUST BE AFFORDED THE COMPENSATION HE DESERVES.
UK and Swedish compensation must extend to: a. Assange’s family, who have suffered financially, physically and psychologically and b.Wikileaks as a media entity and not-for-profit public service publisher.
3. Initiate a Parliamentary Inquiry into the “Assange-exclusion clause” of the revised 2014 extradition law. The UK Supreme Court must review its final judgment and deem the EAW as invalid. Even though Sweden withdrew it, the historical record must be corrected at the highest level.
4. UK must issue a public and formal apology acknowledging misconduct and the tortuous harm it has caused. Without a public admission of fault, the reputation of the UK’s justice system will suffer more damage. A judicial review is in order and MP’s of UK Parliament might consider launching an inquiry to expose the abuses of power. It could also probe the waste of the public purse/taxpayer money spent to guard, investigate, litigate and harass Assange.
5. Assange might consider taking the case to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). The appeal to UK’s Supreme Court had to do with the validity and legal standing of the EAW. Based on the evidence presented above, Assange could have the record corrected and be freed today.
6. File formal complaints to professional bodies that oversee the ethics and conduct of its members. Specifically, Paul Close needs to be disbarred from the legal profession. His role in the Assange case should be comprehensively studied and the UK Law Society should have an opportunity to assess the degree of malfeasance in his conduct.
7. Oversight: a. The UK’s FOIA needs serious scrutiny. The ICO must be compelled to release more documents pertaining to this case, particularly communications between the UK and the U.S.. If the UK’s Information Commission Office is not challenged then the FOIA process is degraded which is counterproductive to its professional purpose. Public authorities are habituating a reflex response of denying access to information which is contrary to genuine public interest. Reputation management concerns should not supersede citizens’ right to access material which is of public concern. b. The UK Supreme Court needs more oversight. Evidence hints that SC decisions were influenced by CPS misconduct, political and foreign influence. c. The UK CPS needs more oversight and persons responsible for unethical behaviour must face criminal consequences.
8. Australia should be actively executing his safe passage and repatriation now under protection, where he can receive urgent medical attention and spend time with family. It would be tragic if the only way that Assange could return to his homeland is in a coffin. He deserves a hero’s return.
“To waste another’s lifespan is the worst larceny.” ~ Jude Fleming
Britain has a Supreme Court scandal on its hands. How will it handle it? Thus far, the Information Commissioner’s Office has covered it up, withheld the truth and instrumentalized secrecy to detain and now torture Julian Assange. This must end immediately.
There is no doubt that Assange is a political hostage of the UK and the U.S. Global condemnation of the UK’s misconduct must be unified and unequivocal. Media organizations, journalism affiliates/committees, Amnesty, RSF, HRW and other human rights groups must increase awareness of this case in order to prevent it from happening to other journalists, publishers and activists. The world must condemn the targeted and protracted attack on Assange and Wikileaks. The only thing worse than the current situation would be if this information did not get the public and parliamentary scrutiny it deserves and Assange were extradited to the US predicated on blatant perversion of justice. Hit the streets in front of the UK Government offices and Belmarsh prison to demand that the UK free Assange immediately. His time has come.