“‘Not a crime to make known crime of a state’: Senior Swedish judge backs Assange”

April 4, 2013

RT on April 3, 2013 released the following:

“A top Swedish judge has defended the release of classified information by WikiLeaks, pointing out the case against Assange has turned into a legal “mess.”

“It should never be a crime to make known crime of a state,” Stefan Lindskog told the audience at a public lecture he gave at Adelaide University, according to Australian Associated Press.

The judge, who is one of the 16 justices working for the Supreme Court of Sweden, revealed an extraordinary amount of detail on Assange’s sexual assault case, despite not sitting on it.

The official also indicated that the courts may rule against sending the WikiLeaks founder to the US due to some conditions of the existing extradition treaty between the two countries.

“Extradition shall not be granted when alleged crimes [are] military or political in nature,” Lindskog stressed.

Moreover, according to the judge, it was debatable whether Assange would have committed a crime under Swedish law.

“What is classified under US law is probably not classified under Swedish law, and enemies to the US may not be enemies to Sweden,” AAP quoted the official as saying.

Lindskog added that extensive media coverage of the case has entailed the public distrust in the legal system.

“I think it is a mess,” he said.

Finally, the judge supported the American soldier Bradley Manning, who provided some of the classified information to WikiLeaks. Lindskog said he hoped Manning would go through a fair trial, saying that the release of classified information was for the benefit of mankind.

Prior to the speech, Assange condemned Lindskog’s decision to speak in Australia, calling it “absolutely outrageous.”

The 41-year-old whistleblower, an Australian citizen, has spent nine months in London’s Ecuadorian embassy, after claiming asylum to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning on sexual assault allegations.

Assange fears that once in Sweden, he could be extradited to America where, according to his lawyers, he is most likely to face trial and possibly even the death penalty for the release of thousands of classified US diplomatic cables, some of them about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.”

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

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We previously discussed the extradition treaty between the United States and Sweden here.

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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US ‘Assange hunt’ chokes air for whistleblowers

March 27, 2012

RT on March 27, 2012 released the following:

“Washington’s relentless pursuit of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, and alleged whistle-blower Bradley Manning, is no secret. But the fate of the two men has got US journalists worried, that they too could soon find themselves behind bars.

Julian Assange’s life resembles a game of chess. He is an Australian citizen in the custody of Britain fighting extradition to Sweden. But no one wants the king of WikiLeaks more than America. Washington has had secret plans for Assange since at least January 2011.

Ironically, the secret was uncovered earlier this month after five million confidential emails from the global intelligence company Stratfor were published by WikiLeaks.

“It’s done frequently when a defendant is outside the US. They’ll get an indictment, which is secret. They’ll seal the charging document of the indictment. They will ask for an arrest warrant and that will also be sealed. That way, the US stands behind a big large boulder, if you will, and then jumps out from that boulder and arrests someone,” says Douglas McNabb, federal criminal defense attorney and extradition expert.

Under house arrest for more than a year, Assange has not been charged with any crime in any country, though Sweden wants to question him over sex-related allegations. The US meanwhile, is determined to punish the forty-year old.

Apparently, it is payback for exposing confidential cables repeatedly shaming America by shining a spotlight on illegalities in overseas military operations and on some embarrassing tactics and opinions from the State Department.

Washington says publishing the documents has created a national security risk. The Justice Department has reportedly mounted an unprecedented investigation into WikiLeaks, aimed at prosecuting Assange under the espionage act.

“They’re going to continue going after Mr. Assange to make a point that we’re tough and we’re not going to let anybody threaten America, whether it’s Al-Qaeda or it’s an Australian national,” believes journalist James Moore.

And some say they’ll go to any lengths to make the point.

“The US government within the federal arena likes to charge others – that have either aided and abetted or assisted or were full blown co-conspirators – likes to go after those in order to flip them. To get them to co-operate with the US government against the major players, in this case Mr. Assange,” McNabb says.

The US is now apparently working on flipping none other than Private Bradley Manning. The US soldier is facing 22 federal charges for allegedly leaking 700,000 documents and videos to WikiLeaks. He’s one of six Americans, the Obama administration has charged with espionage.

“If one of those cases makes it to the Supreme Court, and the Supreme Court upholds the Espionage Act as an act which essentially criminalizes any whistleblower, anybody who exposes war crimes, anybody who challenges the official narrative of the lies of the state, then that’s it. Because that would mean that any leaker could automatically be sent to prison for life. And at that point any idea of freedom of information is over. We will only know what the state wants us to know,” Chris Hedges, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author told RT.

“It’s supposed to be about protecting the national security of the United States. But that is not the way the journalism industry will view it. They will view it as being a message to them. ‘Be careful who you talk to. Be careful what you write because you can be next.’ I think a number of reporters will say ‘I am not risking it,’” Moore believes.

Critics say the Obama administration’s unprecedented “war on whistleblowers” may ultimately deliver a death sentence to freedom of the press in the US. If people and or publishers are criminally convicted and jailed for exposing the truth, more journalists may prefer to abandon First Amendment privileges and reserve the right to remain silent.

Julian Assange’s show ‘The World Tomorrow’ is to premiere on RT later this month.”

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Court rejects petition from WikiLeaks, Julian Assange

January 12, 2012

Politico on January 11, 2012 released the following:

“By JOSH GERSTEIN

The U.S. military’s highest appeals court has rejected a petition by WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange to give their lawyers guaranteed access to the Army’s legal proceedings against the Army intelligence analyst accused of leaking thousands of military reports and diplomatic cables, Pfc. Bradley Manning.

WikiLeaks and Assange argued they deserved a permanent seat at the recent investigative hearing in Manning’s case because of an ongoing criminal investigation targeting Assange and his global transparency website. They also made the unusual request to have a lawyer with security clearance sit on classified sessions the public is excluded from.

However, in an order Wednesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces denied the petition without comment. The only further review would be at the U.S. Supreme Court.

The WikiLeaks/Assange plea was previously rejected by the officer overseeing Manning’s hearing and by an intermediate appeals court, the Army Court of Criminal Appeals. Military prosecutors said there was no basis for according special status just because Assange might be charged in the future. In addition, they noted that in practice the lawyers for Assange and his outfit had been able to gain access to general public seating in the courtroom at Fort Meade, Md.

Manning’s weeklong preliminary hearing, known as an Article 32 session, wrapped up last month, so it could be that the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces considered the issue moot. However, the court didn’t say the petition was denied as moot. In any event, the same issues could arise again if, as expected, Manning’s case is sent to a full, formal court martial.

“We are disappointed by the ruling, but like much of the Manning proceedings themselves, this decision is inscrutable,” said Baher Azmy of the Center for Constitutional Rights, which brough the petition for Assange and WikiLeaks. “The court offers no analysis whatsoever for its ruling, so as much as we strongly disagree with the judgment, we literally cannot understand — or respond to — the reason(s) apparently underlying it.””

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Manning trial a prelude to Assange’s extradition to US?

December 21, 2011

RT on December 21, 2011 released the following:

“Military officials have introduced evidence into the pre-trial hearing against alleged WikiLeaks contributor Bradley Manning with the whistleblower site’s mastermind Julian Assange.

While a tie between the two would allow the prosecution to pursue Private First Class Manning’s alleged suspected involvement in sending Assange top-secret military files, it could finally give the US a reason to extradite the WikiLeaks’s runner to the States.

American authorities have long attempted to tackle Assange for his role in WikiLeaks, a website that the US government insists has aided the enemy by publishing files that would otherwise be left for only a few Army intelligence personnel to see. According to America, any involvement Manning had with WikiLeaks could have caused great harm to the nation and a military tribunal is currently questioning witnesses to see if the case should continue before a jury. By formally introducing Assange into the equation, however, the government could be finally getting its chance to go after the WikiLeaks leader.

Currently under house arrest in England, Australia-born Assange is facing extradition to Sweden where he is wanted on charges stemming from allegations of a sexual assault against two former WikiLeaks volunteers. Currently the UK’s legal system is keeping Assange safe from extradition to America, but should Assange end up on trial, Sweden might be quick to send the whistleblower to America so he could stand trial in the Manning case — and perhaps much more.

“People think that because Sweden is a Western country that they have a legal system the same as ours, that’s completely untrue,” Assange’s mother told AAP last month. “From the time he hits Sweden, he is going to be lost to any kind of observation from anybody to understand if his human rights are being breached.”

“He’s been crucified for doing what he was brought up to do,” added Christine Assange.

American officials critical of WikiLeaks have hunted for Assange since before he aided in the release of thousands of classified diplomatic cables earlier this year that they say compromised American security and intelligence — former presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee even went as far as to wage the death penalty against Assange. As evidence in the Manning case ties the soldier with Assange, those charges could come sooner than Assange would like to see.

A former Obama administration official speaking under condition of anonymity tells Reuters that the US has long sought Assange, but could not go after him without going after the slew of newspapers that he leaked documents to as well. “The government is very serious about wanting to prosecute him. But they have never been able to find a way to do it. How do you prosecute Julian Assange and not the New York Times?” asks the official.

During Manning’s trial on Monday, the prosecution against the alleged whistleblower introduced computer logs which they say show that the soldier had contact information with Assange and had instructions on how to upload files to WikiLeaks. On Tuesday, Adrian Lamo, the hacker that turned Manning in to the government, also drew connections between the two.

In speaking of his own relationship with Manning, Lamo told the courtroom, “I believe that he was reaching out for affirmation and for a like-minded individual that would act as a similar figure in their life as Julian Assange.” When Staff Sergeant Peter Bigelow was asked about Assange, however, he admitted to the court that he had no idea who the man was. Given that searches of Assange’s named were carried out on a computer owned by Sgt. Bigelow, the denial does little to help the case of the Manning — nor does it show how up-to-snuff US military intelligence has been.

Manning is facing life in prison for nearly two dozen charges related to his alleged works with WikiLeaks. On Tuesday, Daniel Ellsberg, the former DoD insider that leaked the Pentagon Papers towards the end of the Vietnam War, called Manning a personal “hero” of his to RT.”

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
International Extradition Lawyers Videos:

International Extradition – When the FBI Seeks Extradition

International Extradition – Wire Transfer – Email – Telephone Call

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Rudd urged to protect Assange

December 19, 2011

The Sydney Morning Herald on December 19, 2011 released the following:

Dan Oakes

“THE former prime minister Malcolm Fraser and dozens of public figures have called on the Foreign Affairs Minister, Kevin Rudd, to ensure the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is protected from ”rendition” to the US.

They warn that if Assange is extradited from Britain to Sweden, where he may face rape and sexual assault charges, he could then be handed over to the US, where prosecutors are considering criminal charges against him following the release of confidential cables.

”The chances of Mr Assange receiving a fair trial in the United States appear remote. A number of prominent political figures have called for him to be assassinated, and the Vice-President has called him a ‘high-tech terrorist’,” their open letter reads.

”Given the atmosphere of hostility in relation to Mr Assange, we hold serious concerns about his safety once in US custody. We note that Mr Assange is an Australian citizen, whose journalistic activities were undertaken entirely outside of US territory.”

Assange has been on bail in Britain for almost a year as he fights extradition to Sweden, where two women have alleged he committed sexual offences against them. He has denied the claims, and last week won the right to appeal against the extradition.

The signatories to the letter – who also include the – American academic Noam Chomsky, Julian Burnside, QC, and the Greens leader Bob Brown – warn that Sweden could hand Assange over to the US without the ”appropriate legal processes that accompany normal extradition cases”.

Private Bradley Manning, who leaked the thousands of secret cables, faced the first day of a preliminary hearing on Friday to determine whether he should be court-martialled over the leaks.

Private Manning’s lawyer told the court that the government wanted the 24-year-old soldier to agree to plead guilty in return for a reduced sentence so he could be used as a witness against Assange and WikiLeaks. Lawyers for Assange were in the courtroom during the first day of the pre-trial hearing, and have asked for access to the court for the duration of the proceedings.”

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Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys Videos:

Federal Crimes – Be Careful

Federal Crimes – Be Proactive

Federal Crimes – Federal Indictment

Federal Crimes – Detention Hearing

WikiLeaks Julian Assange U.S. Extradition Involving Sweden- Guess What I Found

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To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Will the UK Protect Manning?

February 1, 2011

The British government is under pressure to take up the case of Bradley Manning, the soldier being held in a maximum security military prison in Virginia on suspicion of having passed a massive trove of US state secrets to WikiLeaks, on the grounds that he is a UK citizen.

Amnesty International has reached out to the British government, urging them to intervene on Manning’s behalf and ensure his detention conditions are in line with international standards.

At this point it is unclear whether British officials will take any action, particularly whether extradition proceedings for Manning will be initiated. The likelihood of the UK coming to the rescue of Manning is very small, especially considering the US government interest in the case. The UK may offer its assistance to Manning, but extradition is doubtful at this point.

Manning is a UK citizen by descent from his Welsh mother, Susan. Government databases on births, deaths and marriages show that she was born Susan Fox in Haverfordwest in 1953. She married a then US serviceman, Brian Manning, stationed at a military base near the city and they had a daughter, Casey, in the same year. Bradley was born in Oklahoma in 1987.

Bradley was born in the US and is thus a US citizen. But under the British Nationality Act of 1981 anyone born outside the UK after January 1, 1983, who has a mother who is a UK citizen by birth is themself British by descent.

Manning has been held in a military jail located at the Quantico marine base in Virginia since last July, having been arrested in Iraq where he was stationed as a US army intelligence analyst two months previously. He is alleged to have been the source of several WikiLeaks exposés of US state secrets, including the massive trove of embassy cables released in November.

There is an ongoing debate as to whether his punishment is too severe compared to his actions. Many people, in the US and abroad, have been supporters of Manning, Julian Assange, and the publication of the embassy cables.

In December, the United Nations launched an investigation into his treatment to see if it amounted to torture.

The Foreign Office of the UK is not able to release any information on an individual’s nationality without that person’s consent. In general terms, the government normally will not intervene in cases of dual nationality where the person is held in the other country, but there are exceptions on humanitarian grounds, including claims of inhumane treatment. To view the British policy, please click here.

For a complete reading of the news article, please click here.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, Interpol Litigation, International Extradition and OFAC Litigation.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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No Evidence Means No Extradition for Assange

January 25, 2011

U.S. investigators have been unable to find evidence directly linking WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and Bradley Manning, the army private suspected of passing on confidential documents to the whistleblowing website, according to a report last night.

Jim Miklaszewski, NBC News’s chief Pentagon correspondent, reported sources inside the U.S. military as saying they could detect no contact between Manning and Assange. Evidence shows that Manning downloaded thousands of files and passed them to an unauthorized person. However, there is no evidence that Manning passed the files on to Assange or had any direct contact with him.

Without such evidence, it is going to be extremely difficult for U.S. authorities in Washington to demonstrate sufficient cause to extradite Assange and prosecute him for a federal crime.

Manning is being treated as a criminal for his part of the leaks, and is currently under lockdown in the military jail in Quantico, Virginia. The U.S. military is keeping Manning locked in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day.

To view the NBC News article in its entirety, please click here.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, Interpol Litigation, International Extradition and OFAC Litigation.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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