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Crime The Media

Interpol Issues Wanted Notice For Julian Assange 1020

chrb writes "Interpol have issued a wanted notice for Julian Paul Assange for alleged sex crimes. The Guardian and Wired both have commentary."
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Interpol Issues Wanted Notice For Julian Assange

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  • "Sex crimes" (Score:5, Informative)

    by JohnFluxx ( 413620 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:09PM (#34398100)

    Just in case some reads the comments and not the article..

    The women themselves said they were not afraid of him, and he did not force them.

  • Re:"Sex crimes" (Score:5, Informative)

    by shop S Mart ( 755311 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:18PM (#34398196)
    lol no QFTA "The investigation stems from separate encounters Assange had with two women during his August visit to Sweden, where he was applying for Swedish residency and attempting to secure the protection of Swedish free-press laws for his secret-spilling website. According to local news reports, the women told investigators the sexual encounters began as consensual, but turned non-consensual. One woman said Assange ignored her appeals to stop when the condom broke."
  • This is scary (Score:4, Informative)

    by Post-O-Matron ( 1273882 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:31PM (#34398350)

    Got modded Troll for saying this which I'm not sure why.

    Anyway I think the chances of these accusations against Assange being completely unrelated to the leak and the timing being coincidental are pretty slim. It's kinda obvious that higher powers have targetted him. It's even more scary because it seems that these days the easiest way to hurt someone is by accusations of sexual assault. Who would dare hint that it might be untrue? I mean even on Slashdot one gets modded down -1 as Troll for raising this option...

    Here's a quote from the article:

    According to local news reports, the women told investigators the sexual encounters began as consensual, but turned non-consensual. One woman said Assange ignored her appeals to stop when the condom broke.

    I don't understand - the condom broke in the middle so she asked him to stop, he didn't - and that's rape?

  • by MRe_nl ( 306212 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:33PM (#34398382)

    In a statement earlier this month, Assange’s British counsel said that his client repeatedly offered to cooperate with local investigators while he was in Sweden, and has offered to answer questions remotely from Britain since then.

    “All of these offers have been flatly refused by a prosecutor who is abusing her powers by insisting that he return to Sweden at his own expense to be subjected to another media circus that she will orchestrate,” wrote attorney Mark Stephens. “Pursuing a warrant in this circumstance is entirely unnecessary and disproportionate.

  • by neokushan ( 932374 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:36PM (#34398418)

    He has invited the various governments to give file numbers that could potentially put people at risk and they've flat out refused. So far, I haven't seen a single part of the leak that puts anyone in danger. It names names, but they are generally all high up government types, not anyone on the front lines or whatever.

  • Re:"Sex crimes" (Score:3, Informative)

    by makomk ( 752139 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:36PM (#34398420) Journal

    That's interesting. Previous reports claimed he didn't use a condom at all.

  • by santax ( 1541065 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:37PM (#34398442)
    This would be a good moment to release it! []
  • by chrb ( 1083577 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:52PM (#34398642)

    Good question. The whole situation is very unusual. Even if you assume that Assange did suddenly decide, during consensual sex, to carry out a non-consensual act, the issue of prosecution is on shaky ground. The vast majority of rape accusations never make it to court, and the vast majority of those are found "not guilty" (the figure is something like 95% of accused either do not get to court, or walk away free). For a successful prosecution there has to be more evidence than "she says she didn't consent, he says she did". The whole legal issue of being able to predicate consent and retroactively withdraw consent (e.g. consent based on unstated predicate of shared ethnicity []) is fraught with difficulties for a successful prosecution. For a prosecutor to pursue a case, based only on the allegation, is unusual enough. For a prosecutor to issue a request for Interpol intervention, with a view to extraditing a foreigner from a 3rd party country, is highly unusual. For a prosecutor to do this, after the Chief Prosecutor has already stated that the alleged suspect is "no longer wanted" and "is not suspected of rape" and is free to leave the country, is very odd indeed.

    Note also that the Interpol notice is apparently not an international arrest warrant - it is just a request for information: "The Interpol notice is not an international arrest warrant but the public is asked to contact police with any information about Mr Assange's whereabouts." []. Putting out such a notice is bizarre, given that the Prosecutor is in contact with Assange's legal counsel in London, and that Assange has agreed to meet at either the Swedish Embassy or Scotland Yard. The prosecutor wants "more information" about him, but is already in contact, and can arrange a meeting in person or via video conference at the headquarters of the Metropolitan Police in London, but instead chooses the Interpol route? This is not normal for a sex crimes case with only alleged victim testimony and no other evidence. If you or I had unprotected sex with a girl, and she subsequently said her consent had been predicated on use of a condom, the case would never go to court. Certainly it would never become an international police issue. There is the issue of there maybe being two alleged victims, but apparently only one actually complained to the police? I guess we will find out what really happened - if the case ever makes it to court.

  • Re:This is scary (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:52PM (#34398660)

    If the woman can even tell that the condom broke, you're doing it wrong.

  • Trust Interpol (Score:2, Informative)

    by b4upoo ( 166390 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:55PM (#34398712)

    Remember the start of dear old Interpol. It was founded as an organized escape aid for upper echelon Nazis during WWII. Funny how they just could not find Nazis but seem to be able to want to arrest Julian. Who ya gonna believe?

  • Re:This is scary (Score:3, Informative)

    by santax ( 1541065 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @09:59PM (#34398762)
    The charge came right after the release of the iraq/afghanistan leak. And this interpolwarrant comes right after cablegate.
  • by pdcull ( 469825 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @10:14PM (#34398926) Homepage
    Brazil could be a good place for him to hide out at the moment - they have currently have a Federal Congressman [] who is wanted by Interpol [] for financial crimes.
  • Re: Trust Interpol (Score:5, Informative)

    by wampus ( 1932 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @10:17PM (#34398962)

    Remember the start of dear old Interpol. It was founded as an organized escape aid for upper echelon Nazis during WWII.

    In 1923. Learn to causality.

  • Re:What the fuck? (Score:5, Informative)

    by chrb ( 1083577 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @10:23PM (#34399040)

    Or him leaving the country after having been told to keep in contact with the Swedish authorities?

    The prosecutor told Assange's lawyer that there was no warrant for Assange's arrest, and that he was free to leave the country without questioning. Assange did nothing wrong in this regard.

  • Re:Bullshit (Score:4, Informative)

    by arth1 ( 260657 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @10:43PM (#34399248) Homepage Journal

    In Sweden, it is considered rape if a woman asks a guy to stop, even if they have been rutting for twenty minutes and he's five seconds from orgasm.
    When in a foreign country, you are responsible for following the laws there, no matter whether you believe they're fair or not.

  • by Anachragnome ( 1008495 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @10:51PM (#34399326)

    We're old hands at this shit. Last I checked, the US was on pretty good terms with Sweden, too. []

  • by mug funky ( 910186 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @11:14PM (#34399524)

    the above post does not say "unreasonable" at any point.

    you also missed (or at least did not respond to) the part about "...his client repeatedly offered to cooperate with local investigators while he was in Sweden..."

  • Re:Bullshit (Score:5, Informative)

    by protektor ( 63514 ) on Tuesday November 30, 2010 @11:35PM (#34399700)

    Actually in the latest round of releases he did exactly that. He and the newspapers asked the US government what names they needed protected, and those names were blacked out. Even the newspapers have reported that some names were blacked out to protect them. So please stop spreading false information.

  • Re:"Sex crimes" (Score:2, Informative)

    by ziggyzaggy ( 552814 ) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @12:08AM (#34399978)
    nope, in the real world rape cases get thrown out when the plaintiff admits they willfully started sexual intercourse. No crime here. Note to women, changing your mind a day or more later out of jealousy over another woman doesn't constitute rape.
  • Re:HA! (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @12:29AM (#34400162)

    Unfortunately, these charges are not retaliatory as the incidents occurred in August, long before his recent leaks.The accusations have not been refuted and just because something starts consensual doesn't mean mean it can't become non-consensual. Last time I checked, no means no and stop means stop.

  • Re:Bullshit (Score:4, Informative)

    by Shakrai ( 717556 ) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @12:43AM (#34400264) Journal

    My guess is the former and watch as he might mysterisouly be transferred to the US to be tried for American crimes on disclosing secrets.

    Put the tinfoil hat away. Nobody has ever been successfully prosecuted in the United States for publishing secret material. The number of such prosecutions can be counted on two hands. All the case law on the matter comes down AGAINST being able to prosecute the publisher of such information.

    The crime was committed when the information was leaked by someone with a duty to keep it secret, not when a third party published said information. This doesn't make Mr. Assange any less of an asshat but I would not be overly worried about an American criminal prosecution for his activities.

  • Re:scary (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @12:43AM (#34400266)

    If he suddenly dropped off the face of the earth it would just create a martyr out of him, something you cant fight. If he gets smeared into oblivion as a sick pervo that doesn't care about anyone else but himself its much less risky

    "WikiLeaks added a 1.4 GB "Insurance File" to the Afghan War Diary page. The file is AES encrypted and has been speculated to serve as insurance in case the WikiLeaks website or its spokesman Julian Assange are incapacitated, upon which the passphrase could be published." wikipedia []

    That could help explain why the US appears to be taking this all so carefully.

    Not only would he be a martyr, he'd potentially take a good bit more with him.

  • Re:Bullshit (Score:3, Informative)

    by Shakrai ( 717556 ) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @12:48AM (#34400306) Journal

    Militarily, economically, culturally, they're not even in the top five.

    Really? They have the 3rd largest economy in the world [], after the United States and Japan. The PLA is the largest standing army [] on the planet. Culture is a harder thing to measure but I don't think you can discount them in this area either.

  • by Lehk228 ( 705449 ) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @01:03AM (#34400432) Journal
    he didn't evade anything, he was allowed to leave, and now after the fact the prosecutor is demanding that he return to sweden
  • Re:"Sex crimes" (Score:5, Informative)

    by Ihmhi ( 1206036 ) <> on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @01:20AM (#34400548)

    make him out to be a martyr... he'll be replaced just as quickly as he disappears.

    What makes you so sure about that? I bet once Assange goes down, WikiLeaks follows soon after. There are not very many people with the financial means to stay on the run all the time. Among those who do exist, how many of them want to compromise their comfy lifestyle by pissing off powerful interests?

    Assange is not some drug dealer pushing crack on the corner. He is not some kid swapping pirated movies and music. There are not legions of people doing what he does who will just step up and keep it going if he disappears.

    Assange alone is not Wikileaks. As I've already said it's run by a council of 5 anonymous people (who we can safely assume Assange is a member, along with his spokesperson duties) and nearly a thousand volunteers. If he disappeared, died, etc. there's other people to continue the mission.

  • Re:scary (Score:3, Informative)

    by wampus ( 1932 ) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @01:36AM (#34400698)

    Mmm, no. The CIA ran brothels during the 1950s and 1960s to recruit johns for mind control experiments, and they were particularly fond of LSD. This was explored at length in the late 1970s when the US Senate took an interest. Time Magazine [] seems like a decent source.

  • Re:Bullshit (Score:2, Informative)

    by SuricouRaven ( 1897204 ) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @03:00AM (#34401206)
    It's worse than that. Rape can be retroactive. Go out with a women, you both get drunk, have sex... if she regrets it in the morning she can then claim it was rape, on the grounds that you had sex while her judgement was too impaired by the alcohol to consent.
  • Re:OTOH (Score:5, Informative)

    by MaskedSlacker ( 911878 ) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @03:15AM (#34401300)

    if the police strongly suspect a person is guilty of a crime but are unable to prove it, it's ok for them to go searching for something else to convict that person of instead?

    That's a rather humorous misunderstanding of what I said, and how Capone's conviction took place.

    It's more like they tried to collect evidence to convict him on murder and bootlegging charges, and when they looked at the evidence they'd collected realized that they could prove tax evasion.

    It's not as if they said 'Well, we have no evidence for murder, start looking for the next thing on the list, we'll get him eventually.' Tax evasion came up after they'd already collected the evidence that proved he was guilty of tax evasion in the course of their existing investigation.

    This is standard operating procedure for police organizations and prosecuting attorneys throughout the US. "What can we prove with the evidence we have?" So long as the evidence is collected legally (warrants and such), what is wrong with this? They weren't trolling random citizens for evidence of crimes, they found evidence of other crimes committed by someone they already had good reason to investigate.

    Which means that if the police set their minds to it, they could convict anyone they wanted.

    This is already a fact of reality. What stops it from happening is that they generally have to have a reason to carry out the initial investigation (see 4th amendment).

  • by Builder ( 103701 ) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @07:46AM (#34402628)

    I've read through all of the comments on here, and I'm really sad. I don't visit here for up to date news, I can get that elsewhere; I come here for the discussions. But so many of the commenters here are scarily uninformed. And where they're not informed, many of them seem poisoned.

    This is a geek site - we're supposed to be able to view information objectively and without being tainted by unrelated information. This reads more like a political forum :(

    Firstly, these accusations stem from months ago, so this has nothing to do with the most leak. Sweden have been pursuing the interviews and warrants for a number of weeks now.

    Secondly, what's with all of the conspiracy nuts here ? Why is everyone second guessing his reasons for not wanting to go in and talk to the police ?

    He offered to go in repeatedly when he was still in the country. When his residence claim was denied, he asked if there was any reason he had to stay in the country and he was told that he was free to leave. So he did. Now he's in another country, and he's _still_ offering to talk to them but he's not prepared to schlepp back there - that's not unreasonable, is it?

  • by nosferatu1001 ( 264446 ) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @09:27AM (#34403198)

    1. No, he is not. Releasing documetns you have not obtained yoursel is not espionage
    2. Even if it were, he has not signed up to covenants prohibiting him from taking those actions. Unlike Hilaary Clinton.

  • Re:HA! (Score:5, Informative)

    by elrous0 ( 869638 ) * on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @11:00AM (#34404108)

    The incidents *supposedly* occurred in August. But the women in question didn't turn up at the police station until a week after he released his first batch of Iraq War leaks. I'm sure the timing was just a coincidence, of course.

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