[Marxism] Assange lawyer speaks

Rory Dufficy rory.dufficy at gmail.com
Wed Dec 1 21:09:47 MST 2010


http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/12/02/when-it-comes-to-assange-r-pe-case-the-swedes-are-making-it-up-as-they-go-along/

"Apparently having consensual s-x in Sweden without a condom is
punishable by a term of imprisonment of a minimum of two years for
r-pe. That is the basis for a reinstitution of r-pe charges against
WikiLeaks figurehead Julian Assange that is destined to make Sweden
and its justice system the laughing stock of the world and
dramatically damage its reputation as a model of modernity.

Sweden’s Public Prosecutor’s Office was embarrassed in August this
year when it leaked to the media that it was seeking to arrest Assange
for r-pe, then on the same day withdrew the arrest warrant because in
its own words there was “no evidence”. The damage to Assange’s
reputation is incalculable. More than three quarters of internet
references to his name refer to r-pe. Now, three months on and three
prosecutors later, the Swedes seem to be clear on their basis to
proceed. Consensual s-x that started out with a condom ended up
without one, ergo, the s-x was not consensual.

For three months Assange had been waiting in vain to hear whether
media statements by and for the two female “victims” that there was no
fear or violence were going to be embellished so the charges might be
carried forward due to greater seriousness. Such statements would stop
a r-pe charge in any Western country dead in its tracks. R-pe is a
crime of violence, duress or deception. You can r-pe someone by
deluding them into thinking you are someone else or by drugging them
or by reason of their young age but essentially it’s a crime of
violence.

The women here are near to and over 30 and have international
experience, some of it working in Swedish government embassies. There
is no suggestion of drugs nor identity concealment. Far from it. Both
women boasted of their celebrity connection to Assange after the
events that they would now see him destroyed for.

That further evidence hasn’t been confected to make the charges less
absurd does Sweden no credit because it has no choice in the matter.
The phenomena of social networking through the internet and mobile
phones constrains Swedish authorities from augmenting the evidence
against Assange because it would look even less credible in the face
of tweets by Anna Ardin and SMS texts by Sofia Wilén boasting of their
respective conquests after the “crimes”.

In the case of Ardin it is clear that she has thrown a party in
Assange’s honour at her flat after the “crime” and tweeted to her
followers that she is with the “the world’s coolest smartest people,
it’s amazing!”. Go on the internet and see for yourself. That Ardin
has sought unsuccessfully to delete these exculpatory tweets from the
public record should be a matter of grave concern. That she has
published on the internet a guide on how to get revenge on cheating
boyfriends ever graver. The exact content of Wilén’s mobile phone
texts is not yet known but their bragging and exculpatory character
has been confirmed by Swedish prosecutors. Niether Wilén’s nor Ardin’s
texts complain of r-pe.

But then neither Arden nor Wilén complained to the police but rather
“sought advice”, a technique in Sweden enabling citizens to avoid just
punishment for making false complaints. They sought advice together,
having collaborated and irrevocably tainted each other’s evidence
beforehand. Their SMS texts to each other show a plan to contact the
Swedish newspaper Expressen beforehand in order to maximise the damage
to Assange. They belong to the same political group and attended a
public lecture given by Assange and organised by them. You can see
Wilén on the YouTube video of the event even now.

Of course, their celebrity lawyer Claes Borgström was questioned as to
how the women themselves could be essentially contradicting the legal
characterisation of Swedish prosecutors; a crime of non-consent by
consent. Borgström’s answer is emblematic of how divorced from reality
this matter is. “They (the women) are not jurists”. You need a law
degree to know whether you have been r-ped or not in Sweden. In the
context of such double think, the question of how the Swedish
authorities propose to deal with victims who neither saw themselves as
such nor acted as such is easily answered: You’re not a Swedish lawyer
so you wouldn’t understand anyway. The consent of both women to s-x
with Assange has been confirmed by prosecutors.

Proposed reforms of Swedish r-pe laws would introduce a test of
whether the unequal power relations between the parties might void the
sincerely expressed consent of one party. In this case, presumably,
the politically active Ardin, with experience fielding gender equity
complaints as a gender equity officer at Uppsala University, had her
will suborned by Assange’s celebrity. The prosecutor coming as she
does from a prosecution “Development Unit” could achieve this
broadening of the law during Assange’s trial so he can be convicted of
a crime that didn’t exist at the time he allegedly committed it. She
would need to. There is no precedent for it. The Swedes are making it
up as they go along.

A great deal more damning evidence is yet to be revealed about what
passes for legal process in Sweden, such as Assange’s lawyers having
not received a single official document until November 18, 2010 (and
then in Swedish language contrary to European Law) and having to learn
about the status of investigations through prosecution media
announcements but make no mistake: it is not Julian Assange that is on
trial here but Sweden and its reputation as a modern and model country
with rules of law.




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