• Sweden edition
 
Crucial UK extradition hearing for Assange

Crucial UK extradition hearing for Assange

Published: 04 Dec 2011 14:14 GMT+01:00
Updated: 04 Dec 2011 14:14 GMT+01:00

Almost a year after his arrest over claims of rape and sexual assault, the 40-year-old Australian will ask two judges at London's High Court to decide whether his appeal can proceed to the Supreme Court.

For the appeal to be heard in Britain's highest court, the judges must rule the case raises a question of general public importance.

Monday's hearing comes a month after his first appeal against a ruling that he can be sent to Sweden was rejected.

If the ruling goes against Assange, the British leg of his legal battle will end and he faces extradition to Sweden within 10 days, an outcome that would mark a new low for the former hacker after a string of controversies.

Swedish police want to quiz Assange over allegations made by two Swedish women of sex crimes, which he strongly denies.

Assange claims the allegations are politically motivated and linked to the activities of his anti-secrecy website, which angered the United States by publishing thousands of classified documents.

He has already appeared nine times in British courts since his detention under a European Arrest Warrant on December 7 last year.

He has spent much of the last year under virtual house arrest on a supporter's country estate in eastern England, where he has had to stick to strict bail conditions.

A lower court initially approved Assange's extradition in February, but he appealed to the High Court which rejected his challenge on November 2.

Assange made the application for the Supreme Court to hear the case one day before the legal time limit.

The judiciary of England and Wales said the High Court would "consider Julian Assange's application for a certificate of law of general public importance on 5 December."

Legal sources said a decision was expected on the same day but that it was not certain.

According to the website Sweden Vs. Assange, which supports his case, his legal team will question whether a European Arrest Warrant issued by a state prosecutor is valid.

They will also query whether he can be defined as "accused" despite having not been prosecuted, the website added.

Assange has previously expressed fears that his extradition to Sweden would lead to his transfer to the United States to face as yet unspecified charges of spying.

The legal challenge comes despite the fact that a Swedish public relations firm claimed last week that it had been hired by Assange and that he would soon be returning to Sweden to face questioning over the allegations.

Swedish prosecutors want to question Assange on suspicion of two counts of sexual molestation and an accusation of rape made by two Swedish women in August 2010.

If the High Court fails to back his appeal bid on Monday, it will be another blow for Assange after his fortunes deteriorated dramatically in the past year.

When he was arrested, WikiLeaks was riding high having just started releasing more than 250,000 classified US diplomatic cables, following the earlier publication of US military files on the war in Afghanistan.

But support for the eccentric, platinum blond WikiLeaks chief has faded amid a welter of controversies.

Former WikiLeaks colleagues have turned on him, attacking the way he ran the site. He also fell out with newspapers, including the New York Times and Britain's Guardian, that WikiLeaks initially worked with to release documents.

WikiLeaks' work has come under threat, with the site forced to suspend releasing files in October after a funding blockade.

It resumed publication Thursday, however, with the launch of a project on the global surveillance industry.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

12:22 December 4, 2011 by carolannusa
Mr Assange's support base is stronger than ever; the vindictiveness of a few former employees & journalists has not diminished the determination of those of us who want to see justice done for this man. The investigation in this matter has been fraught with irregularities. The prosecutor had ample time to re-question Mr Assange during his extended voluntary stay in Sweden, making the request for the European Arrest Warrant unnecessary. The lack of chromosomal DNA on a condom kept by one of the complainants suggests the possibility of evidence tampering. The victim in this whole sorry mess is Mr Assange himself.
12:26 December 4, 2011 by William Sachsen-Coburg-Gotha
It's not the final card in this legal battle. Not by a long shot. Once he has exhausted the UK courts he may take it further, to the European Court of Justice or the European Court of Human Rights. If he loses and goes to trial in Sweden then I imagine he'll want the trial to be public, not behind closed doors. So he'll go through the system and back to the ECHR for that too.
13:19 December 4, 2011 by skumdum
What a loser he his.
14:54 December 4, 2011 by Nomark
Didn't he keep on saying that he tried to arrange a meeting in Sweden to clear this all up ? Or is this another one of his porkies which the judge at the first extradition hearing found unconvincing when he examined the submitted evidence and cross-examined the witnesses ?
15:44 December 4, 2011 by William Sachsen-Coburg-Gotha
I believe that he says he did but the Swedish prosecutors says he didn't. The evidence and witnesses to this couldn't be cross examined as they did not attend court. The judge accepted the prosecutor's version without it being questioned.
17:46 December 4, 2011 by Opinionfool
"the Swedish prosecutors" that's part of the problem isn't it? There have been so many Swedish prosecutors involved and each has made a different determination. One, the first, who effectlively said Assange didn't have a case to answer, then a second, with an ardent feminist agenda, who waited till Assange went out of the country before raises charges.

And of course there are the American prosecutors hanging around in the background too. Bradley Manning's legal team are now seeking to have documents from the State Department published that say the WikiLeaks cables did *not* harm US interests or personnel around the world as "much of the material was either old or in the public domain anyway".
19:06 December 4, 2011 by strixy
Swedes, the world s laughing at you. Everyone knows that both women had consensual sex with Mr Assange. Then one (who had a boyfriend in New York btw) started worrying about HIV as there was an 'accident' (a broken condom) during one intercourse. However, they both decided to carry on then. She asked Assange to test himsel. He reused. This may make him not a nice guy but certainly not a criminal. The only was a woman can get free anti0retrovirus treatment in Sweden is when she reports rape... .
20:54 December 4, 2011 by GLO
What a jerk, and same for jerks that defend this criminal.....
21:37 December 4, 2011 by Streja
strixy, you're wrong. Swedes only pay 1 800 kr a year on medicine in total.
23:04 December 4, 2011 by Iraniboy
I guess it would be better for him to be Sweden. It is much safer for him than the UK. He will in wrost case get 2 months jail and that's all.
23:37 December 4, 2011 by sgt_doom
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
11:53 December 5, 2011 by Dogs_Gonads
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-16027942

Just now on BBC.
Today's headlines
National
Chainsaw man destroys house in family feud
The man used a chainsaw to destroy most of the Lidköping home. Photo: Shutterstock

Chainsaw man destroys house in family feud

A man in central Sweden has gone on a rampage with a chainsaw after a family housing dispute took an unexpected turn. READ  

National
Man frames beggar with stolen tablet computer
The beggar was detained for almost 24 hours after the accusation. Photo: TT

Man frames beggar with stolen tablet computer

A man in southern Sweden has landed in hot water after he stole a tablet computer, gave it to a beggar, then reported her to the police. READ  

Stockholm 'sub hunt'
Sweden ready to use force to surface sub
The Swedish Armed Forces have sent out 200 troops. Photo: TT

Sweden ready to use force to surface sub

UPDATED: Sweden's military has announced that if it finds a suspect foreign vessel in the Stockholm archipelago, it is prepared to force it to the surface "with weapons if necessary". READ  

Stockholm 'sub hunt'
Sub hunt: 'There is something out there'
Former navy officer Bosse Linden in Vaxholm. Photo: Maddy Savage

Sub hunt: 'There is something out there'

Stockholm's archipelago is the focus of the biggest military operation in Sweden since the Cold War. The Local is in the region's capital, Vaxholm, to see what residents make of the drama. READ  

Presented by CurrencyFair
CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers
CurrencyFair co-founder Brett Meyers

CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers

Tired of losing money when you send cash back home? Join other expats in Sweden who avoid bank fees and hidden charges by sending money internationally with CurrencyFair, an online marketplace where secure transactions are faster and cheaper. READ  

European Union
Extremist saves Sweden Democrats' EU group
Sweden Democrat leader Jimmie Åkesson. Photo: TT

Extremist saves Sweden Democrats' EU group

The EU group that bound several Eurosceptic parties including the Sweden Democrats has been saved by an MEP from a far-right Polish group, just a week after it appeared to have crumbled, according to a UK press report. READ  

Stockholm 'submarine' hunt
Timeline: Mystery 'submarine' in Stockholm
Sweden's Armed Forces are out in force after reports of a foreign vessel in the Stockholm archipelago. Photo: TT

Timeline: Mystery 'submarine' in Stockholm

The world has had its periscope on Sweden since the Swedish military launched an extensive hunt for what is rumoured to be a damaged Russian submarine in the Stockholm archipelago. Here is the timeline of events so far. READ  

Business & Money
Profit leap for Swedbank
A branch of Swedbank in Malmö. Photo. TT

Profit leap for Swedbank

Swedbank has seen its profits rise higher than expected. READ  

New coalition
Sick pay U-turn from Sweden's new coalition
Stefan Löfven has changed his strategy on sick pay. Photo: TT

Sick pay U-turn from Sweden's new coalition

Small businesses won't face rising sick pay costs, following a policy reversal from Sweden's new coalition government. READ  

Stockholm 'submarine' hunt
Vessel hunt continues at 'full strength'
Minehunter HMS Koster takes part in the search in the Stockholm archipelago on Sunday. Photo: Marko Säävälä/TT

Vessel hunt continues at 'full strength'

The search for a suspected foreign vessel in the Stockholm archipelago continues with "full strength" on Tuesday morning, according to Sweden's armed forces. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
Property of the week: Malmö
Gallery
PHOTOS: 'Foreign activity' in Swedish waters
National
Sweden deploys troops over underwater threat
Gallery
People-watching: October 19th
TT
Society
QUIZ: How good is your Swedish?
Blog updates

19 October

Getting it (Blogweiser) »

"Follow Joel Sherwood on FB Few watch baseball in Sweden. This is excellent when your team loses..." READ »

 

17 October

Editor’s Blog, Oct 17th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, Here’s the whole week of news in just 60 seconds. The most-read story was about a..." READ »

 
 
 
Business & Money
Get your own office in Gothenburg or Stockholm - free for a day
National
A Touch of Scandinavia: Reindeer in the kitchen
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden: October 17th - 24th
Society
The nudity... and nine other things expat men notice in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 15th
Gallery
Your views: Should outdoor smoking be banned in Sweden?
Business & Money
Sweden has 'large hole' in finances
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Finding a job in Stockholm
Society
Monster salmon caught in northern Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week: Lorensberg
National
Scandinavia's child bride
National
Ebola crisis: How is Sweden preparing?
Lifestyle
Sweden's The Bridge to become 'more Danish'
Business & Money
How Sweden is becoming a cashless society
Gallery
Stockholm Burlesque Festival 2014
National
How a little red horse became a symbol for Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 12th
Business & Money
The hottest start-ups from southern Sweden
National
What's on in Sweden: October 10th - 17th
National
Stockholm is 'best' region for well-being
Gallery
People-watching: October 8th
National
Five facts to know about Patrick Modiano
Society
My Swedish Career: A French fashionista in Sweden
Society
Swede's anti-bully Facebook tale goes viral
Society
Have you seen Sweden's viral subway cancer campaign?
National
Isis: Swedes linked to Turkish prisoner swap
National
Should Swedes be banned from buying sex abroad?
Gallery
Fredrik Reinfeldt's leaving presents
National
Five Swedish TV shows you shouldn't miss
Gallery
A tool belt, a casserole, and a book. Fredrik Reinfeldt's parliament gifts
TT
Lifestyle
Top five winter festivals in Sweden
TT
National
Sami reindeer herders win mine reprieve
Gallery
Property of the Week: Gamla Enskede
Sponsored Article
How to catch the first lobster of the year
Politics
Ten new minister faces you should know
Tech
First womb transplant baby in world born in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 5th
National
What's on in Sweden
National
Sweden rethinks Afghan translators' protection
Society
Interview with Geena Davis: 'I want to be in a Swedish movie'
Team SCA
Sponsored Article
All-female SCA team takes off on Volvo Ocean Race
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

1,008
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN