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Assange Says Harrods Assisting Metro Police in 'Round-the-Clock Vigil' 275

The Daily Mail reports that Julian Assange seems to have yet another foe (or at least friend of a foe) watching persistently while he stays put in the Ecuadorean embassy in London: Harrod's Department Store. The Metro Police, according to Assange, have developed a relationship with the store, and are using that relationship to facilitate their full-time observation of his roosting place in the embassy. When the founder of Wikileaks says, "We have obtained documents from Harrods [saying that] police have people stationed 24 hours a day in some of the opposing buildings Harrods controls," it seems likely that those documents actually exist.
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Assange Says Harrods Assisting Metro Police in 'Round-the-Clock Vigil'

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  • by jonwil ( 467024 ) on Sunday August 30, 2015 @05:55PM (#50422775)

    It may be unusual that its going on for such a long period of time but police (in the UK and elsewhere) regularly work with building owners to get access to vantage points overlooking suspect properties to observe what is going on.

    • What is UNUSUAL (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 30, 2015 @05:58PM (#50422785) the effort they spend for Jesus Assange. They must be really scared of the truth.

      • by quenda ( 644621 )

        Don't be silly. The UK always spends millions of pounds on round-the-clock surveillance of suspected non-violent offenders.

  • I thought the swedish statute of limitations had expired. Doesn't that mean the arrest warrant is moot and he is free to leave?

    • I thought the swedish statute of limitations had expired. Doesn't that mean the arrest warrant is moot and he is free to leave?

      I think the "fugitive from justice" part still applies.

    • by jonwil ( 467024 )

      Actually, the statute of limitations on some of the charges has expired. There are other more serious charges who's statute of limitations hasn't yet run out.

    • Some of them had a five year limit while one or more has a 10 year limit so everyone has to stay comfy for another five years.

    • by rkww ( 675767 )

      I thought the swedish statute of limitations had expired. Doesn't that mean the arrest warrant is moot and he is free to leave?

      Nope. His biggest problem is he broke his bail conditions []

    • by nomadic ( 141991 )
      You can't run out the statute of limitations by running from the police with an active warrant, generally.
    • by Sycraft-fu ( 314770 ) on Sunday August 30, 2015 @09:07PM (#50423475)

      The validity of the charges in Sweden aren't his only problem. They could drop the case, he'd still be in trouble with the UK because he fled bail. Bail is an agreement between you and the court. You agree to appear as ordered, and they let you out of jail. Often there is also a monetary component to try and ensure your compliance. However regardless of the details, you are legally required to present yourself in court when ordered.

      So when Sweden said they wanted him, the UK arrested him. In the EU there's some pretty strong extradition rules so even though the UK had no issue with him, their extradition treaty with Sweden required them to arrest him. He was granted bail, and the monetary component was paid for by supporters. At the point, he had to wait for a court date when the UK courts would determine if the extradition request was valid. At that point if they did, they'd hand him off to Sweden, give back his bail money, and would be all done as far as they were concerned.

      They did find it was a valid request, he challenged that finding, and so on up to the UK's high court. They ruled that yes, it was a valid request. Remember this has nothing to do with guilt, they are not interested in that. Their only interest is if the extradition request is a valid one per the treaty. It was, so they said "Ok, you have to turn yourself in and we'll ship you off to Sweden." He decided not to, and instead fled.

      Well at that point he become a criminal in the UK. They now had a criminal interest in him since he'd broken UK law by skipping bail. Doesn't matter anything about the original charges. This is a separate crime, and it is an ongoing one, so no statute of limitations.

      That's how it works basically everywhere. If the court says you have to how up, and you don't, that by itself is a crime.

      • You seem to know a lot about bail... I suspect your past is a little shady...0

      • Hardly major crime, skipping bail. Bonds have been forfeited, at worst he would have to spend a very few months in a British jail, no big deal under the circumstances. If Sweden ended up dropping charges, or letting them expire without ever even interviewing Assange, he would have a passable case to try to get that bail money back.

  • Yes? And? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Frosty Piss ( 770223 ) *

    This is a suprise? People should be outraged? Not so much.

    Adds he's paranoia got the best of him years ago. Not his well founded paranoia about the USA Three Letter Agencies, but his paranoia about his place of power in The Cult of Assange.

    Most of his personal issues could have been resolved years ago, his current situation are of his own making.

    He needs to fly to Sweeden and take care of his personal business, you know: "man up".

    The chances of him being extradited to the U.S. are slim to none at this point

    • His claims that if he went to Sweden they'd send him to the US. Ummmm, really? Because if there were a nation I would be worried about handing me off to the US clandestinely, it would be the UK. The UK and US cooperate to a ridiculous extent on international matters. So I have trouble believing that you could go there and feel like they'd protect you, but be worried about Sweden handing you over.

      • He is paranoid, no doubt. But it may be justifiable paranoia.

        Forces in the US government would certainly like to see him imprisoned, but they may also be afraid of making a martyr of him. He may also be afraid that the US is applying pressure to Sweden to convict him of rape an imprison him for a long, long time for that. Most societies regard rapists as among the most vile of criminals. An prison sentence for contributing to the leaks might take him out of play, but a prison sentence for some form of sex o

    • If I were the UK in charge of that, I would 'leak' documents to Wikileaks designed to make Assange as paranoid as possible. Next it's going to be the gardener, and soon we're going to hear about a tell-tale heart.
    • He needs to fly to Sweeden and take care of his personal business, you know: "man up".

      The chances of him being extradited to the U.S. are slim to none at this point.

      I care not even the slightest about this character but even I wouldn't be turning myself over to Sweden. I have absolutely zero doubt he will end up in Guantanamo or worse either before he arrives in Sweden or afterwards with an apology by some official saying how they regret that the mistake made in paperwork allowed a European to hop onto an American plane accidentally and they take full responsibility for the error (which means nothing in this day and age). Of course, the deeply heartfelt apology will be

  • Of course they are using local resources to keep an eye on him. He's a criminal hiding in an embassy, they aren't just going to forget about it.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      He's a criminal

      When was he convicted?

      • Generally speaking, if you are a fugitive from justice then the court infers that you guilty of something. You're still presumed innocent of the accused charges; you might be hiding something even worse. But you're presumed to be a criminal, yes. There are all sorts of consequences and restrictions that fall into place. In many cases it is even possible to conduct the trial without your presence if it can be proved that you knowingly fled to avoid trial.

        One way to prove that is if you had had a bail hearing

    • He expected freedom of speech. He volunteered to be a spokesperson for a movement. The same thing would have happened to anyone else. Assange was chosen wisely to be spokesperson for his talent of being loud. Everyone seems to forget that Wikileaks was an unsanctioned press organization.

      Six million a year to watch him? Are you kidding me. You don't spend that kind of money to help extradite a date rapist where his alleged crime occurred in another country. He is clearly being persecuted. Interested parties

      • Any high profile criminal who is in a known hiding place, totally pinned down, and giving interviews on the internet is going to be worth 24/7 surveillance until apprehended. Count on it.

        Don't expect the police to care how big or small the crime is. If it is an important enough situation to make the news, then it is important for Law and Order to Prevail.

        You don't need to agree with them to understand that this is their perspective, and it is actually part of their job to have this perspective.

        If it is stil

  • Worse still for Assange is the knowledge that this news story only acts to promote Herrods...

    If you are a tourist in London and have any interest in Julian Assange, he's easy enough to find across the street from Herrod's!

    Now they are using him as a commercial billboard, which really adds insult to injury.

  • Julian Assange is getting sad nobody is mentioning him in the media anymore.
    Don't worry, more documents have been leaked! The cops are still keeping an eye on him!

  • Drama queen (Score:2, Insightful)

    Don't we have enough with this drama queen? Let him be forgotten by all of us. He is just trying to keep is popularity indicator to the highest mark he can. That is the only thing he can deal to get some money.
    • Don't leave your house for the next five years because you have every reason to fear you will be made a political prisoner, and tell us how awesome it was.

  • The thing is, as beneficial as some of the things Assange has done are, on a personal level he is prone to wild and clearly false conspiracy theories and completely untrustworthy unless he is disclosing (unedited) documentary evidence of whatever he's talking about.
  • A lot of US government shills in the comments today. Did you think you wouldn't be noticed?

    • Has it ever occurred to you that some people simply don't agree with your take on things. You know, people who, personally - just like you - have looked at the facts of the matter and arrived at a different opinion? Your own view must be weak indeed if you have to result to that sort of fantasizing in order to make yourself feel better about it.
    • Yeah, the government mind control satellite radio turns on whenever slashdot posts about Asshat.

      OR, some people just have a different position than you. Gosh, wow, impossible right? Everybody agrees with Ramdom Asshat Supporter #1234567. You must just be so shocked. Usually everybody agrees with you, right? Turn on the TV, everybody agrees. Radio, everybody agrees. Coffee shop, everybody agrees. You're so used to everybody agreeing with your anti-establishment position, that the mere existence of people d

  • They could easily expunge the embassy legally. Maybe move it to another property. Assange couldn't follow and they could legally then go in after him.

    • by AHuxley ( 892839 )
      It goes back to ideas like Vienna Convention on Consular Relations []
      The UK and US loved setting up all kinds of embassy or consulate like building globally that have a nice geographic locations.
      So a lot of work goes into location, cooling, electrical and ability to collect all signals in another country. Great for the NSA and GCHQ. The idea that a building with its computer systems could be closed down quickly is not a nice thought so the legal protections for embassy
    • They can "legally" go after him at any time. The stuff about embassies being the territory of the country they represent is a hollywood fiction. There is not a legal restriction preventing them from entering the embassy and arresting somebody. What is keeping them out is a sense of polite diplomacy. 24/7 surveillance is cheap compared to creating an "incident" that gets newspapers in a tizzy for weeks. If he was more important, they would just go in after him. As it is, he's basically under self-imposed hou

  • That if Assange were to go outside a drone would most likely take him out. []

    • If he dies now, he becomes a martyr. Even his critics do not want that. They'd much rather see him discredited. A rape conviction would be ideal for that.

To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing. -- Elbert Hubbard