Sweden drops Assange rape investigation


#21

[quote=“Nobby_Stiles, post:14, topic:101267”]
I guess one could make the case that if the Trump administration thinks there is a case then other administrations might also have believed there was a case.
[/quote]Well, they didn’t, but I’m really just using this quote to jump into another thought - I also don’t want Assange to face prosecution in the US, especially under Trump. I think he’s a self-aggrandizing sack of old horse cum, and I wish he’d seen his day in court in sweden - But i don’t think his initial work with wikileaks was anything he should be charged for. And if we’re talking an administration with any lick of sense, there’s not really anything to charge him with, at least, anything they could reasonably justify within the law and/or the constitution. (Wikileaks has since made some FAR more questionable moves, but that’s another discussion.) And I definitely don’t want to see him up on charges in front of a dishonest and likely corrupt AG, the reason for which is at it’s core nothing more noble than covering his boss’s arse, and by extension his own.

I want him to face justice for what he’s done(or at least, face a court), but I’m strongly against him going down on bullshit charges in service of the corrupt and powerful. That’s not justice, that’s the actions of a petty and vindictive tyrant.

[quote=“Humbabella, post:12, topic:101267”]
We see other powerful people (and not-powerful people) get away with sexually assaulting women all the time.
[/quote]Yes, but a)That’s fucked and we shouldn’t, b)Doesn’t mean he should too, and c)this and that are two different things.

[quote=“Humbabella, post:12, topic:101267”]
Message to women: if you’d like justice for your sexual assault, please try to get sexually assaulted by someone who powerful politicians have a beef with.
[/quote]As opposed to “Good luck getting justice if he’s a popular guy who is quite famous and/or has any sort of platform”?

I’m sorry, I don’t accept any of these excuses. Not to mention the absurd idea that Sweden is trying to get some sort of petty revenge using someone Else’s suffering - have you thought maybe they were just trying to investigate and if appropriate, prosecute a crime that happened within their borders, as is both their right and obligation? Do we just give him a free pass do do what he likes to who he likes, because potentially he made some politicians very cross?

[quote=“stanestane, post:19, topic:101267”]
That charege in UK being the same one that UN panel characterised as arbitrary.
[/quote]They still have an obligation to peruse those charges. In reality, they’ll just let him off with a fine, as he’s not a violent offender, and he wasn’t up for any UK charges at the time.

[quote=“stanestane, post:19, topic:101267”]
And that conspiracy theory being serious enough to convince government of a sovereign country to grant him an asylum.
[/quote]He was granted Asylum because Sweden refused to promise they wouldn’t extradite him - which is what Assange was counting on, because it’s not really something they can do, or at least, do honestly. Of course, it couldn’t be something like, say, Eucador trying to build a better global stature, and score votes for the current government back home with the Anti-US crowd. Yeah, turns out the US isn’t very popular in South America, go figure, wonder why.

Or maybe it’s an attempt to whitewash Eucador’s pretty terrible image of persecuting the press - they’re something like 106th for global press freedom, if I recall, and I’m surprised they’re that high, with their history of mysteriously vanishing journalists, crushing independent outlets that refuse to serve as government cheerleaders, and using Whistleblowers and similar as political pawns.

Tell me, have you ever heard of Alexander Barankov? Probably not, you’d have to be a real news and foreign affairs junkie to have remembered that name. He’s a Belarusian whistle-blower, published a bunch of documents regarding governmental and police corruption in what is largely known as the last dictatorship in Europe. Went to Eucador, got asylum, all hunky dory, right? Yeah, it was - until Eucador wanted to ally with Belarus, at which point they decided to start proceedings to - it was thought at the time - basically bounce him through a kangaroo court of a review panel, and send him back to Belarus, literally to his death, they made no secret of wanting to execute him. They damned near did it too, in the end only halting due to multiple members of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights basically going to them and saying “If you do, the consequences will be dire, if you know what I mean.” And shortly after that, suddenly, oh, no legal refugee claim doubts at all, silly us, why were we even reviewing it again?

[quote=“stanestane, post:19, topic:101267”]
Now that charges in Sweden have been dropped it’s even more obvious that this is not about some dude trying to weasel his way out of rape charges. Using laws that are meant to protect victims of sexual abuse for arbitrary persecution of political opponents actually undermines these very same laws.
[/quote]Okay, so let me get this straight - the guy who was hiding out in an embassy, with the only charges against him being an arrest as a suspect in a rape investigation, under the protection of a government widely known to be corrupt and known for treating asylum claimants like political tokens to be spent, is obviously hiding out from some big, scary conspiracy after him, who are just using ginned up charges to get him and do something, god knows what but odds on it’s not pleasant. And, It should also be noted that pretty much anyone with the most basic level of foreign affairs knowledge regarding South America, he’s hiding out in the embassy a country notorious for corruption, who would sell him down the river the moment anyone wrote a (metaphorical) cheque for their price, and yet, this shadowy conspiracy of nations somehow just doesn’t want him badly enough to pay that price, just badly enough to find two women willing to risk international notoriety and/or jail by helping them gin up said charges and spend seven years pursuing it.

Ya know, when you put it like that it just sounds totally, entirely reasonable and sane, yep yep.


#22

Interesting note that has come up from speaking to a Swedish work friend of mine, that warrants breaking it off into a separate comment: We were discussing the whole thing, and turns out, this might actually be a bit of an error of translation, compounded by a misunderstanding with the Swedish legal system. The literal translation, when edited into grammatically correct English, works out to “Dropped investigation”(The precisely literal is “Laid Down”), but a more accurate translation would be “Discontinued” since “Dropped” implies a level of disinterest or unwillingness, and the reason they’ve dropped the investigation - but not the case - is entirely due to procedure.

What’s been discontinued is the pre-investigation into the crime, which usually precedes the case being heard in court. The two women’s reports are still valid, and the pending charges are still “Active”, they’re just no longer investigating, as any further investigation has been deemed as pointless, as no further information can be gleaned and no legal progress can be made without Assange showing up in court. And with Assange having fled the country and shown zero willingness to stand before the court to face the charges after this period of time, continuing the investigation has been deemed pointless, and thus, procedure dictates that they discontinue. If Assange returns to Sweden, the case will continue. If new evidence is brought forward that advances the investigation(which, to be clear, isn’t likely) the investigation will resume in force.

The case only times out in 2020, so expect Assange to most likely stay in the embassy, or at the very least, stay out of Swedish territory, until 2021.


#23


#24

I don’t have to choose between thinking Assange is a sexual predator and finding some of the concern over his crimes disingenuous (though not your concern specifically). He ought to be in a Swedish prison. I would put money down he is not only guilty of those crimes but that he’s sexually assaulted several other women in other nations who didn’t come forward for various reasons. The whole case still makes me very angry (not at you). I’m not angry that someone is trying to prosecute Assange for crimes he committed, I’m angry because the whole thing has been used as a political football, whether it’s people who normally claim to stand up for victims finding excuses for a person who they had some political support for, or people who obviously honestly don’t give a shit about sexual assault suddenly feigning concern because they don’t like the politics of someone.

Anyway, I’m glad to hear this. I imagine it’s still just going to run out of time at the 2020 deadline you mentioned, but I’d like to think there is still hope.


#25

[quote=“Humbabella, post:24, topic:101267”]
The whole case still makes me very angry (not at you). I’m not angry that someone is trying to prosecute Assange for crimes he committed, I’m angry because the whole thing has been used as a political football, whether it’s people who normally claim to stand up for victims finding excuses for a person who they had some political support for, or people who obviously honestly don’t give a shit about sexual assault suddenly feigning concern because they don’t like the politics of someone.
[/quote]Oh, I’m sorry. I absolutely mistook what you meant - my apologies, it’s been a long day over here, I’m not entirely at my best. I think we’re actually pretty much entirely on the same page here, just managed to get a few wires crossed in the communication of it.


#26

It was obvious something in my comment came across to you as excusing Assange (it’s a hard distinction I’m trying to draw after all). But don’t worry, I felt you responded with appropriate invective towards the sort of asshole who excuses Assange.


#27

Scandanavian prisons are no picnic, subjecting prisoners to harsh conditions like only having access to a Playstation 2.


#28

Oh, the horror! Someone call Amnesty International!


#29

THOSE AREN’T THE ONLY TWO POSSIBILITIES!

Sorry everyone. The pernicious Aristotelian fallacy that ignores all the beutiful complexity of the world is a pet peeve of mine.


#30

I dont understand. So in Sweden you cant bring charges if the accused doesnt agree to being questioned? And in Sweden is there no right to avoid self-incrimination? Is the quote above the same as saying that without Assange choosing to self-incriminate there isnt a case against him and if so isnt that the same as saying there is not sufficient evidence to charge him?


#31

[quote=“Nobby_Stiles, post:30, topic:101267”]
I dont understand.
[/quote]Okay, so, the rough-and-ready cliffnotes version: the investigation and the legal case are separate, but connected. If they find themselves in a position where the investigation and/or Legal case cannot advance despite best efforts and after a reasonable period of time, it is discontinued, as so not to waste time and money spinning wheels. The case can still be active in that situation, as it’s not a matter of no evidence, it’s a matter of having no further evidence to investigate to push the case forward beyond where they are at present, but also not being able to proceed to the next step due to one factor or another - in this case, the defendant not being present.

[quote=“Nobby_Stiles, post:30, topic:101267”]
So in Sweden you cant bring charges if the accused doesnt agree to being questioned?
[/quote]No, the charges - or, I suppose, potential charges, but let’s just assume that’s what I mean from this point forward for the sake of brevity - are still active, they’re just dropping the investigation because at this time they can’t proceed without the accused present, and they don’t have the ability to compel the accused to appear in this situation(since he’s nicked off to the embassy, which isn’t a typical situation), and the investigation will likely not result in anything happening on that front(since it’s in a bit of a deadlock right now, as you know), so they’re stopping the investigation - but not the case - for now, so that it’s not wasting resources and time, as dictated by procedure.

[quote=“Nobby_Stiles, post:30, topic:101267”]
And in Sweden is there no right to avoid self-incrimination?
[/quote]As I understand it - and to be clear, I’m not a Swedish lawyer or any combination of those two things - they can’t compel him to testify against himself, he does have the right to remain silent, but the can (presuming he’s in the country or in their custody, of course) compel him to appear. Or in other words, they can make you show up, but they can’t make you talk.

[quote=“Nobby_Stiles, post:30, topic:101267”]Is the quote above the same as saying that without Assange choosing to self-incriminate there isnt a case against him and if so isnt that the same as saying there is not sufficient evidence to charge him?
[/quote]Absolutely not. It’s saying that without his appearance or interview(direct, not through someone else) they can’t proceed to the next step in the procedure of the investigation. So instead of keeping it active and going nowhere, they’re shutting it down. It’s a purely procedural issue, not an evidentiary issue.

If it helps, I now have a translation from the Swedish Director of Public prosecutions. I don’t know if it’ll help clear it up for you, but here it is just in case it does.


#32

AFAK Barankov is still alive and well in Ecuador, the same country that offers the asylum to Assange. So I don’t really know what is the point you are trying to make. Sounds to me you are saying that they are evil because at some point they almost did a bad thing but than changed their minds and did a good thing!? Kinda sounds like a strawman argument to me. Anyhow, how is this relevant in this case? One and the same government can act as an example of moral virtue in one case and as total assholes in another. Heck history of US, UK and even Sweden can show you various examples both positive and negative.


#33

Thank you for this. I found it useful.

One might consider that this element suggests some weakening of Ms Ny’s position.

Through means of legal assistance provided by the Ecuadorian Republic, Ecuadorian prosecutors interviewed Julian Assange on 14-15 November 2016 in London. A report of the interviews was received by Sweden on 4 January 2017, and the translation into Swedish was received on 15 March 2017. These interviews in London led to further investigative measures being taken. It is now not possible to take any further steps that would move the investigation forward. In view of the fact that all prospects of pursuing the investigation are now exhausted, it appears that, in light of the views expressed by the Supreme Court in its assessment of the proportionality in this case, it could be argued that it becomes less proportionate to maintain the arrest of Julian Assange in his absence via a European Arrest Warrant.


#34

Every so often someone on BB quotes Craig Murray on Assange. That’s like quoting Pamela Anderson on vaccines. Murray cloaks Alex Jones-level conspiracy theorizing with his brief stint as an unimportant diplomat to give an air of respectability to his batshit craziness.


#35

[quote=“stanestane, post:32, topic:101267”]
AFAK Barankov is still alive and well in Ecuador, the same country that offers the asylum to Assange. So I don’t really know what is the point you are trying to make.
[/quote]Really? I thought it was a pretty clear example of Eucador using a whistleblower under their protection as a political pawn, and were only discouraged when the cost became higher than the gain, but if you don’t get it, I guess you don’t get it. Like, where is there even to go from here, if you don’t understand what an example is?
Either way, I only brought it up as an example of what I’d already said, which you clearly just want to discard anyway because your point hinges on the fact that they’re all brilliant and upstanding with no ulterior motives, so it’s not hugely important.

I don’t really have anything more to say to you, so, moving on I guess.

[quote=“Nobby_Stiles, post:33, topic:101267”]
One might consider that this element suggests some weakening of Ms Ny’s position.
[/quote]I’m not so sure, to me it reads more like “We’ve gone as far as we can, and we can’t really get him out of where he’s hiding out of our reach nor is he coming out, so there’s no point pushing for something we’re not gonna get.”

But, on the other hand, unless someone put me through law school when I’m not looking, I’m not a lawyer, so how close to the mark I am, swedish lawyers and god(who may or may not be a Swedish lawyer) only knows. From where I’m sitting, both are equally reasonable ways to interpret it.

Edit - another article came through that clears it up some. Quoting directly from VOX:

“I can conclude, based on the evidence, that probable cause for this crime still exists,” Marianne Ny, the lead prosecutor in Sweden, told reporters today.


#36

Several US politicians and government officials indicated prosecution (under the Espionage Act) and even assassination.
If I were him I would’ve doubts too. The US used extraordinary rendition before.

  1. April 2017: Justice Department debates charges:

Stratfor leaks: (Secret) sealed Grand Jury indictment against Assange?:

Calls for assassination:


#37

My statement doesn’t hinge on assumption that Ecuador is in This out of pure intentions and no ulterior motives. Quite the contrary if you think about it. If you intend to use him as a pawn than there is very little to gain in sheltering a random sex offender sought by Sweden on other hand sheltering a political opponent wanted by a super power is quite another thing.

I don’t know what Ecuadorian reasons are in this case but I am pretty sure they wouldn’t be doing this if they didn’t believe in said theory.


#38

[quote=“FFabian, post:36, topic:101267”]
April 2017: Justice Department debates charges:
[/quote]You should read back up the thread, I literally already dealt with this. To save you time, let me copy and paste.

Unless he has a time machine to leap from 2012 to 2017 to see if charges are being considering, then jumping back and making his decision based on that, then it’s irrelevant.

Seriously, I don’t mean to offend, but I’m stunned that I even have to explain that the actions of the Trump administration now, just barely under five months old, have absolutely no bearing on decisions made almost a half-dozen years before.

And then you follow it up with a pop culture magazine talking big game about something that was never heard about or seen again, and no further evidence appeared, and a Member of the republican party bloviating during a presidential campaign with the whole “talking tough” routine, despite never actually having the power to make that call. Not exactly compelling evidence.

[quote=“stanestane, post:37, topic:101267”]
My statement doesn’t hinge on assumption
[/quote]Things you apparently don’t understand:

  • Examples.
  • When you’re getting the polite brush-off.

#39

[quote=“d_r, post:34, topic:101267”]
Every so often someone on BB quotes Craig Murray on Assange. That’s like quoting Pamela Anderson on vaccines. Murray cloaks Alex Jones-level conspiracy theorizing with his brief stint as an unimportant diplomat to give an air of respectability to his batshit craziness.
[/quote]Sometimes, I miss the old days, long ago, when instead of shit like Craig Murry, the weirdest it ever got was Ron Paul libertarians, and Mark trying to lecture a food safety microbiologist about raw milk, which I assure you was deeply, weird, in a funny kind of way.


#40

I politely brush off you polite brush off :slight_smile:
And you answer is ad hominem so minus -10 points sir :slight_smile: