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posted by takyon on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:07PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the from-one-cell-to-another dept.

Submitted via IRC for Runaway1956

Judge blasts Assange for jumping bail, sentences him to almost one year

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been sentenced to 50 weeks in prison for fleeing to the Ecuadorian embassy in London while on bail in 2012. At the time, he was facing possible extradition to Sweden on sexual assault charges.

Assange remained in the embassy until last month, when he was evicted by his Ecuadorian hosts and re-arrested by British authorities.

Wednesday's sentencing is unlikely to be the end of Assange's legal problems. Shortly after he was re-arrested last month, US authorities unsealed an indictment charging him with conspiring with Chelsea Manning to crack a hashed password belonging to a Pentagon computer in 2010. At the time, Manning was an Army private leaking confidential military documents to WikiLeaks. Assange was unable to learn the password, but the US argues that his attempt is sufficient to charge him with conspiracy.

In a letter to the court, Assange argued that he had fled to the embassy out of fear that he'd be extradited to the United States and wind up being held indefinitely at the US prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Also at BBC, The Guardian, CNET, and The Register.

Previously: Inadvertent Court Filing Suggests that the U.S. DoJ is Preparing to Indict Julian Assange
U.S. Ramping Up Probe Against Julian Assange, WikiLeaks Says
Ecuador Denies That Julian Assange Will be Evicted From Embassy in London
Wikileaks Co-Founder Julian Assange Arrested at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London
Julian Assange Associate Arrested In Ecuador


Original Submission #1Original Submission #2Original Submission #3

Related Stories

Inadvertent Court Filing Suggests that the U.S. DoJ is Preparing to Indict Julian Assange 94 comments

Inadvertent Court Filing Suggests that the U.S. DoJ is Preparing to Indict Julian Assange

Prosecutors Have Prepared Indictment of Julian Assange, a Filing Reveals

The Justice Department has prepared an indictment against the WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, marking a drastic escalation of the government's yearslong battle with him and his anti-secrecy group. It was not clear if prosecutors have filed charges against Mr. Assange. The indictment came to light late Thursday through an unrelated court filing in which prosecutors inadvertently mentioned charges against him. "The court filing was made in error," said Joshua Stueve, a spokesman for the United States attorney's office for the Eastern District of Virginia. "That was not the intended name for this filing."

[...] Seamus Hughes, a terrorism expert at George Washington University who closely tracks court cases, uncovered the filing and posted it on Twitter.

A Justice Department spokesman declined to say on Thursday what led to the inadvertent disclosure. It was made in a recently unsealed filing in an apparently unrelated sex-crimes case charging a man named Seitu Sulayman Kokayi with coercing and enticing an underage person to engage in unlawful sexual activity. Mr. Kokayi was charged in early August, and on Aug. 22, prosecutors filed a three-page document laying out boilerplate arguments for why his case at that time needed to remain sealed.

While the filing started out referencing Mr. Kokayi, federal prosecutors abruptly switched on its second page to discussing the fact that someone named "Assange" had been secretly indicted, and went on to make clear that this person was the subject of significant publicity, lived abroad and would need to be extradited — suggesting that prosecutors had inadvertently pasted text from a similar court filing into the wrong document and then filed it.

"Another procedure short of sealing will not adequately protect the needs of law enforcement at this time because, due to the sophistication of the defendant and the publicity surrounding the case, no other procedure is likely to keep confidential the fact that Assange has been charged," prosecutors wrote. They added, "The complaint, supporting affidavit, and arrest warrant, as well as this motion and the proposed order, would need to remain sealed until Assange is arrested in connection with the charges in the criminal complaint and can therefore no longer evade or avoid arrest and extradition in this matter."

U.S. Ramping Up Probe Against Julian Assange, WikiLeaks Says 20 comments

U.S. ramping up probe against Julian Assange, WikiLeaks says

American federal prosecutors have been pressing witnesses in the U.S. and abroad to testify against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, WikiLeaks says, offering further evidence that the Justice Department is building a criminal case against the man who leaked Democratic emails hacked by the Russians in the 2016 election.

In a new submission to the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights, based in Washington, WikiLeaks is urging the Justice Department to unseal the charges that appear to have been secretly filed against Assange in the Eastern District of Virginia. A mistake in a Justice Department court filing in November inadvertently suggested the existence of those charges.

Previously: Inadvertent Court Filing Suggests that the U.S. DoJ is Preparing to Indict Julian Assange


Original Submission

Ecuador Denies That Julian Assange Will be Evicted From Embassy in London 46 comments

Looks like Assange may go from the loving arms of the Ecuadorian Embassy to London's finest cell when he is evicted, which is now imminent.

UK police outside Ecuador embassy amid WikiLeaks tweets

Also at The Hill.

Ecuador denies WikiLeaks claim it plans to release Julian Assange

The Ecuadorian government on Friday rejected claims by WikiLeaks that founder Julian Assange would be ousted from his sanctuary at the country's embassy in London "within hours to days."

Ecuador's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement released Friday that the allegation was "an attempt to stain the dignity of the country," according to an NBC News translation. Ecuador "has made significant expenditures to pay for his stay" and has "endured its rudeness," the ministry continued.


Original Submission #1Original Submission #2

Breaking News: Wikileaks Co-Founder Julian Assange Arrested at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London 243 comments

Breaking: Met police confirm that Julian Assange has been arrested at the Ecuadorian embassy.

Mr Assange took refuge in the embassy seven years ago to avoid extradition to Sweden over a sexual assault case that has since been dropped.

The Met Police said he was arrested for failing to surrender to the court.

Ecuador's president Lenin Moreno said it withdrew Mr Assange's asylum after his repeated violations to international conventions.

But WikiLeaks tweeted that Ecuador had acted illegally in terminating Mr Assange's political asylum "in violation of international law".

[...] Scotland Yard said it was invited into the embassy by the ambassador, following the Ecuadorian government's withdrawal of asylum.

After his arrest for failing to surrender to the court, police said he had been further arrested on behalf of US authorities under an extradition warrant.

He doesn't look happy, to say the least.

Update: As this is a breaking story, more information is coming out regularly - one source that updates their reports frequently is Zero Hedge - thanks boru!

Previously: New Analysis of Swedish Police Report Confirms Julian Assange's Version in Sweden's Case
Ecuador Reportedly Almost Ready to Hand Julian Assange Over to UK Authorities
UK Said Assange Would Not be Extradited If He Leaves Embassy Refuge
Inadvertent Court Filing Suggests that the U.S. DoJ is Preparing to Indict Julian Assange
U.S. Ramping Up Probe Against Julian Assange, WikiLeaks Says
Ecuador Denies That Julian Assange Will be Evicted From Embassy in London


Original Submission

Breaking News: Julian Assange Associate Arrested In Ecuador 54 comments

Assange associate Ola Bini has been arrested in Ecuador for alleged involvement in hacking government computer systems. A large quantity of electronic equipment and credit cards were allegedly found in his suitcase and during a raid of his home.

Assange's arrest was designed to make sure he didn't press a mysterious panic button he said would bring dire consequences for Ecuador

Julian Assange's arrest at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London was carried out in a specific way to prevent him from pressing a mysterious panic button he said could bring dire consequences for Ecuador, its foreign minister said.

[...] It is not clear exactly what form the "panic button" took: whether it was a physical device or a metaphor for some other easily activated insurance measure. It is also unclear what leverage Assange thought he had over Ecuador.

Assange's lawyer did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider on the nature of the button and whether it existed. According to Valencia, though, it was serious enough for Ecuador to warn British authorities and carry out the raid in such a way that Assange was not able to get back into his room after learning of his imminent arrest.

Julian Assange must face Swedish justice first - MPs and peers

Julian Assange Charged with U.S. Espionage Act Violations 47 comments

Assange Indicted Under Espionage Act, Raising First Amendment Issues

Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks leader, has been indicted on 17 new counts of violating the Espionage Act for his role in publishing classified military and diplomatic documents in 2010, the Justice Department announced on Thursday — a novel case that raises profound First Amendment issues.

The new charges were part of a superseding indictment obtained by the Trump administration that significantly expanded the legal case against Mr. Assange, who is already fighting extradition proceedings in London based on an earlier hacking-related count brought by federal prosecutors in Northern Virginia.

[...] On its face, the Espionage Act could also be used to prosecute reporters who publish government secrets. But many legal scholars believe that prosecuting people for acts related to receiving and publishing information would violate the First Amendment.

That notion has never been tested in court, however, because until now the government has never brought such charges. The closest it came was indicting two lobbyists for a pro-Israel group in 2005 who received classified information about American policy toward Iran and passed it on. But that case fell apart after several skeptical pretrial rulings by a judge, and the charges were dropped.

Though he is not a conventional journalist, much of what Mr. Assange does at WikiLeaks is difficult to distinguish in a legally meaningful way from what traditional news organizations like The New York Times do: seek and publish information that officials want to be secret, including classified national security matters, and take steps to protect the confidentiality of sources.

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  • (Score: 5, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:11PM (13 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:11PM (#837482)

    No credit for time served in the Embassy?

    • (Score: 4, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:16PM (7 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:16PM (#837485)

      "Julian Assange has never been charged with anything in Sweden. He was merely “wanted for questioning”, a fact the MSM repeatedly failed to make clear. It is now undeniably plain that there was never the slightest intention of charging him with anything in Sweden. All those Blairite MPs who seek to dodge the glaring issue of freedom of the media to publish whistleblower material revealing government crimes, by hiding behind trumped-up sexual allegations, are left looking pretty stupid."

      https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2019/04/so-where-is-the-swedish-warrant/ [craigmurray.org.uk]

      • (Score: 3, Informative) by bussdriver on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:52PM

        by bussdriver (6876) on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:52PM (#837505)

        They will have to pull even more crazy stuff to bring expired laws back. Even then the main crime they started with in Sweden was a dead law their court threw out before that 2 experts back then said would be similar to "involuntary rape" in the USA which is why it failed to be successfully used before wikileaks. Making the whole thing even less credible; aside from the fact they dropped the whole thing and let him leave their country until another the USA found another official to bring up charges to grab him. Remember, years later saying they couldn't do video interviews despite doing video interviews for MURDER suspects.

        The PURPOSE is to make an example out of anybody who messes with the empire even if they are not under jurisdiction or working as press. The smear campaign (some of which was leaked) has continued and worked pretty well. Assange hasn't helped himself either... Any FAIR person would give him time served, 9 years vs 1 of a nice British prison... If he had known that was all, he'd have volunteered to only lose 1 year of his life.

        NOTE: Hillary people FORGET it was the FBI, not Wikileaks! She rebounded from the email leak; the email issue existed before the leak. The last second illegal FBI announcment about NEW emails that came from her assistant's laptop; had nothing to do with Wikileaks. Mostly likely it would have had a BIGGER negative impact if it wasn't the 2nd leak of her emails. But forget that, we love Comey now so lets forget the attack on the Free Press.

      • (Score: 2, Informative) by ikanreed on Wednesday May 01 2019, @08:01PM

        by ikanreed (3164) on Wednesday May 01 2019, @08:01PM (#837510) Journal

        I do appreciate the lie [bbc.com]. The wikipedia sources linking the text of the original warrant have fallen off the internet, but the media reporting at the time show pretty clearly there was a EU arrest warrant issued, the necessary item you're saying never existed.

      • (Score: 3, Informative) by isostatic on Wednesday May 01 2019, @08:02PM (3 children)

        by isostatic (365) on Wednesday May 01 2019, @08:02PM (#837511) Journal

        His argument was that by being extradited to Sweden he would then get passed to the U.S.. It's a load off bullshit, as the U.S. could have just as easilly extradited him from the U.K

        The warrant that Sweden was using to get him to answer questions was a European Arrest Warrant, in the same way that Devon and Cornwall police can arrest someone who they believe has gone to Birmingham. No need for charges before arresting someone.

        • (Score: 1, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @08:11PM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @08:11PM (#837517)

          It's a load off bullshit, as the U.S. could have just as easilly extradited him from the U.K

          You have compared extradition laws between the countries?

          • (Score: 2) by isostatic on Thursday May 02 2019, @08:31AM

            by isostatic (365) on Thursday May 02 2019, @08:31AM (#837725) Journal

            Yes, it's far easier to extradite from the UK than from Sweden.

        • (Score: 5, Interesting) by All Your Lawn Are Belong To Us on Wednesday May 01 2019, @09:14PM

          by All Your Lawn Are Belong To Us (6553) on Wednesday May 01 2019, @09:14PM (#837548) Journal

          I disagree. I'm pretty sure that obtaining extradition on somebody not currently under detention requires filing an Interpol Red Notice in order to get the person detained, which may or may not work as expected. That requires the cooperation of Interpol. It has far less likelihood of working if the respondent can show that the Red Notice was filed for political reasons or part of a political crime. If someone is already in custody in another country then the extradition process is considerably simplified. "You don't need to arrest that person, they're already in gaol in your country." It would have been considerably easier on the U.S. to launch extradition proceedings if he had been extradited to Sweden. Just as easy as it is now that he is in custody in England. The key words being, "in custody." So the U.S. didn't need Sweden the second that he jumped bail in the U.K. and they knew the Brits would play along.

          I invite correction from someone who has actual knowledge about the process.

          --
          Keep everyone ignorant of the magical world! KEEP AMERICA OBLIVIATE!
      • (Score: 2) by Nerdfest on Thursday May 02 2019, @04:09AM

        by Nerdfest (80) on Thursday May 02 2019, @04:09AM (#837666)

        I saw something in some article saying the original complain was from a woman who had no evidence, and who had already been kicked out of Cuba for working with the CIA. I have no idea if it's true or not, and I'm assuming reality is falling apart anyway.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by zocalo on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:29PM (4 children)

      by zocalo (302) on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:29PM (#837493)
      He *could* have upto got 52 weeks, so he did get some clemency. It's largely moot anyway; the judge could have let him off with nothing at all because of his self-imposed house arrest, but since he's demonstrably a high flight risk and pending an extradition hearing (the exact same circumstances he was under before he sought asylum) he's almost certainly going to be under lock and key until that gets resolved. Since I suspect he'll try and fight extradition all the way that's likely to be lot longer than the 25 weeks he's actually required to serve.

      Unless the CPS think it'll be done and dusted within 25 weeks, in which case it gives them a justifiable reason for keeping him locked up and largely incommunicdo until they can get him on a plane, presumably to the US since there's no sign of Sweden reopening cases and making a request for him first. Yet.
      --
      UNIX? They're not even circumcised! Savages!
      • (Score: 3, Funny) by RamiK on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:55PM

        by RamiK (1813) on Wednesday May 01 2019, @07:55PM (#837507)

        Nah. The judge just averaged 52 (the number of weeks per year he could barely remember and wasn't sure about) and 48 (12*4) since they couldn't be bothered googling it up and were too embarrassed to ask.

        Ehe, I should probably post this anonymously...

        --
        compiling...
      • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Thursday May 02 2019, @02:23AM (2 children)

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Thursday May 02 2019, @02:23AM (#837647) Homepage Journal

        The US and UK almost certainly have their ducks in a row already. The extradition will proceed, and soon enough, we'll be reading about Julian's appearance in one court or another in the US. A year is plenty of time, considering that both nations have already had years to prepare for it.

        Who doubts that that the UK will cooperate fully with the US extradition request? The UK may not break any laws, but they'll bend, fold, and mutilate any laws necessary to accomplish the mission.

        --
        “If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking.” ― George S. Patton on Ukraine
        • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @06:56AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @06:56AM (#837698)

          Funny to think US was a UK colony and now UK is totally US's bitch.

        • (Score: 2) by zocalo on Thursday May 02 2019, @08:27AM

          by zocalo (302) on Thursday May 02 2019, @08:27AM (#837722)
          Yep. If there was ever any doubt this work was going on that should have evaporated when bits of the prosecutor's file leaked a few months back. There's a lot of chatter from MPs that Sweden should have first dibs if they request it, but I suspect that's just cover; they either deeply suspect, or actually know for a fact, he's going to get hit with a lot more than the currently proposed five years if he gets to a US courtroom and are hoping to land the ultimate responsibility for that extradition in the Swedish courts. Given the apparent lack of action from Sweden I suspect they know that too and are not going to take the bait. Totally not shocked that Australia is continuing to ignore the plight of one of their citizens too, probably out of a similar desire to avoid getting involved.

          Of course, the UK's MPs are not meant to have any influence over the judiciary (despite all the "strong hints" above), so I guess it's still *possible* that a judge could block any extradition. There have been a few high profile examples of that, but those were not quite so politically embarassing as Assange's case is so time will tell. They were also generally reliant on the mental state of the accused, and I'm not convinced that Assange wouldn't veto any attempt by his defence to use that kind of argument, but again, time will tell.
          --
          UNIX? They're not even circumcised! Savages!
  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Gaaark on Wednesday May 01 2019, @08:51PM (3 children)

    by Gaaark (41) on Wednesday May 01 2019, @08:51PM (#837536) Journal

    So bankers fail and cost the economy GREATLY and get their wrists slapped....

    --
    --- Please remind me if I haven't been civil to you: I'm channeling MDC. ---Gaaark 2.0 ---
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by All Your Lawn Are Belong To Us on Wednesday May 01 2019, @09:36PM (1 child)

      by All Your Lawn Are Belong To Us (6553) on Wednesday May 01 2019, @09:36PM (#837552) Journal

      They got their wrists slapped? When?

      --
      Keep everyone ignorant of the magical world! KEEP AMERICA OBLIVIATE!
    • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @10:02PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @10:02PM (#837560)

      Slap on the wrist? They gave them the opportunity to get free money via on trillions of dollars they deposited with the Fed:

      But excess reserves increased considerably in 2008, as the Fed expanded the money supply to finance unconventional monetary policy measures such as quantitative easing. As of May 2018, excess reserves are nearly $1.9 trillion, ten times more than required reserves.

      In normal times, excess reserves aren’t profitable, as they don’t earn a return. Instead of holding cash as excess reserves, banks could lend those funds and earn interest. However, after the 2008 recession, the Federal Reserve started paying interest on excess reserves (IOER). By altering the incentives for commercial banks to extend loans or hold excess reserves, the Fed is able to use the IOER as an additional monetary policy tool.

      https://fredblog.stlouisfed.org/2018/06/paying-interest-on-excess-reserves/ [stlouisfed.org]

      They hope it "trickles down" into the real economy, which other posters here will tell you has nothing to do with "trickle down economics" since on the wikipedia page it says that term only applies to tax policy. Giving huge super rich banks free money and hoping they invest it or loan it out is totally different stuff that democrats are allowed to approve of.

  • (Score: 1) by RandomFactor on Wednesday May 01 2019, @09:01PM (4 children)

    by RandomFactor (3682) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday May 01 2019, @09:01PM (#837541) Journal

    In a letter to the court, Assange argued that he had fled to the embassy out of fear that he'd be extradited to the United States and wind up being held indefinitely at the US prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

    All valid except Guantanamo. I don't see him being shipped to Gitmo.

    --
    В «Правде» нет известий, в «Известиях» нет правды
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @09:48PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @09:48PM (#837554)

      You say that like its a bad thing.

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by c0lo on Wednesday May 01 2019, @10:53PM (1 child)

      by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday May 01 2019, @10:53PM (#837585) Journal

      I don't see him being shipped to Gitmo.

      Dam' right you won't, everything will be hushhush, they don't allow the press in such occasions.

      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @08:31AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @08:31AM (#837726)

        Dam' right you won't, everything will be hushhush, they don't allow the press in such occasions.

        Nah, you can keep a man locked up indefinitely with indefinite prosecution of "newly discovered crimes".

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @01:59AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @01:59AM (#837638)

      I see him being shipped to ADX Florence.

  • (Score: 1, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @09:51PM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 01 2019, @09:51PM (#837556)

    Turns out the cat had no outstanding warrants and was released."Thank God", said the cat, "A year cooped up with that moron used up six of my lives. He never flushed the toilet, left dirty socks lying around and cooked smelly ethnic cuisine like vegemite all day long".

    • (Score: -1, Redundant) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @12:28AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @12:28AM (#837608)

      The cat was adopted by a Chinaman. He hasn't been heard from since.

    • (Score: -1, Redundant) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @12:31AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @12:31AM (#837611)

      The cat was adopted by a Chinaman. He got 30-45 minutes at 375F.

    • (Score: -1, Redundant) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @12:36AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @12:36AM (#837612)

      The cat was adopted by a chinaman. He is doing fine.

      • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @02:03AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 02 2019, @02:03AM (#837640)

        And he got a nice cat skin out of the deal too.

  • (Score: 1) by VacuumTube on Thursday May 02 2019, @02:24AM (1 child)

    by VacuumTube (7693) on Thursday May 02 2019, @02:24AM (#837648) Journal

    " Assange was unable to learn the password, but the US argues that his attempt is sufficient to charge him with conspiracy."

    And yet Trump can't be charged with obstruction because the actions he took to thwart the investigation aren't crimes because they sought to prevent discovery of ~10 acts that would have been crimes had they suceeded--according to attorney general Barr, when questioned today by the Senate.

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