Thursday, June 14, 2012

Assange: Julians Concerns Are Deeply Justified.

There is no rule of law in Sweden. By Per E Samuelson.

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The Julian Assange case has resulted in intensive international criticism of Swedish juridprudence. Law professor MÃ¥rten Schults insists there is rule of law in Sweden. But what experience he has of our system with detention, restrictions, protocols for lawyer visits etc he doesn't say. Schultz doesn't know what he's talking about.

It's about time someone familiar with our reality pounds their fist into the table and says it like it is: there is no rule of law in Sweden! In Sweden we have a routine overuse of detention with restrictions. A use that is unnecessary, humiliating, and prevents the accused from preparing their defence.

To start a trial by detaining and isolating the suspect from the world around is appropriate when it comes to hard crimes and when the question of guilt is clear. To treat Anders Breivik in Norway and Anna Lindh's murderer Mijailovic that way is self-evident. Letting them be free before the trial is repugnant and unthinkable.

But if it's a matter of who is telling the truth with two equal well adapted members of society, two non-criminal individuals, then we have to ask why one of the two should be detained and isolated before a trial. The case of Assange is in this category.

The case began in August 2010 with the first police interrogation of Assange. He was a free man then. The prosecutor asked for another interrogation at the end of September and insisted this one take place with Assange locked away in isolation. She's therefore requested Assange be detained, issued a European Arrest Warrant, and requested his extradition. The Stockholm district court and the Svea court of appeal gave her the right to arrest Julian Assange in absentia.

But neither Julian Assange nor the world around can understand this. Why can't even this police interrogation take place with Assange a free man? Assange is not Swedish. He doesn't live in Sweden. He has the whole world as his workplace and he needs to be able to travel freely. Why can't Sweden accept this and summon him to an interrogation without adding a demand for detention and isolation? He'd respond to such a summons. The interrogation would take place. He'd be on his way again. And if there's a trial then he'd return and carry it out. If Sweden had treated the case in that way then it would have been over with long more,00.shtml