Should Assange’s current British appeal fail against his extradition to Sweden, he will probably, once charged, be denied bail and held incommunicado until his trial in secret. The case against him has already been dismissed by a senior prosecutor in Stockholm and given new life only when a right-wing politician, Claes Borgstrom, intervened and made public statements about Assange’s “guilt”. Borgstrom, a lawyer, now represents the two women involved. His law partner is Thomas Bodstrom, who as Sweden’s minister for justice in 2001, was implicated in the handover of two innocent Egyptian refugees to a CIA kidnap squad at Stockholm airport. Sweden later awarded them damages for their torture.
These facts were documented in an Australian parliamentary briefing in Canberra on 2 March. Outlining an epic miscarriage of justice threatening Assange, the enquiry heard expert evidence that, under international standards of justice, the behavior of certain officials in Sweden would be considered “highly improper and reprehensible [and] preclude a fair trial”. A former senior Australian diplomat, Tony Kevin, described the close ties between the Swedish prime minister Frederic Reinheldt, and the Republican right in the US. “Reinfeldt and [George W] Bush are friends,” he said. Reinhaldt has attacked Assange publicly and hired Karl Rove, the former Bush crony, to advise him. The implications for Assange’s extradition to the US from Sweden are dire.
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
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