Assange Case Fact-Checker
Significant information has come to light since the Assange story was originally covered in the media and UK courts in 2012.
The facts, as contained in official court documents and other official material on this case, are the following:
1. The UN formally found in February 2016 that Julian Assange is unlawfully detained by Sweden and the UK. On 5 February 2016, the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention announced its decision after a 16-month investigation into his case. Sweden and the UK participated in the process, but their arguments failed to convince the panel that their actions against Julian Assange were justified. The UN ordered Sweden and UK to immediately release him and compensate him for violating his rights. On 30 November 2016, the United Nations rejected the United Kingdom’s attempt to appeal the UN’s February ruling in favour of Julian Assange.
2. Assange has not been charged and he is not wanted for trial. The UK Supreme Court acknowledged that Assange is not charged in Sweden. The prosecutor acknowledged in correspondence with UK authorities that the matter is a ’preliminary investigation’, and that no decision had been made to charge.
3. Assange does not "believe" there is an ’espionage’ case against him, it is a fact. On 19 May 2016, the FBI told a US court that it continues to actively pursue Julian Assange and WikiLeaks. On 15 March 2016, the US Department of Justice filed a 113 page document to court saying that there is a pending national security prosecution against Assange and WikiLeaks. A federal warrant from 2012 shows that the WikiLeaks case concerns Espionage, Conspiracy to commit Espionage, Theft of Government Property, Electronic Espionage (classed as a terrorism offence under the Patriot Act), and (general) Conspiracy. Assange’s alleged co-conspirator, Chelsea Manning, is sentenced to 35 years for revealing information to WikiLeaks. She filed an appeal against her sentence on 18 May 2016.
4. Assange has not "refused to come to trial or indeed be questioned" Assange has asked that he be interrogated in the UK by Swedish authorities since 2010, but the prosecutor declined. Correspondence from 2015 shows Assange agreed unconditionally to a questioning. Since he was arrested in 2010, 44 other people have been questioned in the UK by Sweden. The Swedish Court of Appeal (confirmed by Sweden’s Supreme Court) made a finding in 2014 that the prosecutor in the case had breached her duty in the Assange case by refusing to progress the case by questioning Assange in the UK for 5 years.
5. Assange did not "flee". Assange stayed in Sweden for 5 weeks in order to be questioned, during which time the prosecutor declined to question him on a number of occasions. Assange left Sweden with the consent of the prosecutor. He entered the Ecuadorian embassy and applied for asylum, which is his right, and was granted it in relation to the US espionage case.
6. Assange has already been cleared and the woman says the police made it up in order to ’get him’. On August 25 2010, Assange was cleared of the suspicion of ’rape’ by Stockholm’s Chief Prosecutor Eva Finne, who stated she "made the assessment that the evidence did not disclose any offence of rape". On 25 of August, the prosecutor stated that "The conduct alleged disclosed no crime at all and that file (K246314-10) would be closed". The case was only resurrected after a politician, Claes Borgstrom, intervened in the case. The police report states that she felt “railroaded by police and others around her”. While she was at the police station to inquire about HIV tests she sent messages to friends saying that she that she "did not want to put any charges on JA but that the police were keen on grabbing him" (14:26) and “did not want to accuse JA for anything”; that “it was the police who made up the charges”; and that she was “shocked when they arrested JA" because she "only wanted him to take a [HIV] test” (17:06).
7.The UK Supreme Court has found that the ruling in the Assange case had been decided on an erroneous legal argument Paras 36 and 39 of the Bucnys Supreme Court case acknowledged that the deciding argument in Assange had erroneously assumed that the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties was applicable to the Framework Decision - it is not, which makes the decision in Assange extremely controversial).
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