On 3 April 2013, the University of Adelaide are hosting an event entitled “The Assange Affair: freedom of speech and freedom of information, a global perspective”.
The key-note speaker, for the event, is Justice Stefan Lindskog, Chairman of the Supreme Court of Sweden, Sweden’s highest court of appeal.
The University Website informs us:
“As one of Sweden’s most eminent jurists he is uniquely able to provide an authoritative view of the Assange affair”.
The message here is clearly, what he says goes, in relation to the “Assange affair”, including the extradition.
The event is being sponsored by the Swedish Embassy and Lipman Karas, a legal practice situated in London, Hong Kong and Australia but, coincidentally, not in Sweden.
The subject of the keynote address clearly places the Assange extradition and the Swedish allegations, as the main subject of the lecture.
While he hasn’t been charged, he is clearly the subject of a current Swedish investigation and some form of judicial proceedings, in the form of the European Arrest Warrant. Stefan Lindskog, being the ‘Chairman of the Supreme Court of Sweden; is currently highly-placed in the Swedish Judiciary. To say that his coming here, to publically discuss the legal issues in relation to Julian Assange’s matter, is highly inappropriate, is a gross understatement.
What is an Australian University doing allowing Sweden’s “most eminent jurist” to come and publically try Julian Assange on Australian soil. Obviously the fee paid by the Swedish Government must have been good for the University to allow this.
The Assange “affair” as they are calling it, has high-lighted, for the rest of the world, the unhealthy connection between the Swedish police, media and their politicians. The Swedish Prosecutors rapidly leaked details to the media, about the sexual molestation allegations against Julian Assange, on at least two occasions. In fact, the Swedish press knew about the allegations before he did.
The corruption and inadequacies exhibited by the Swedish Police and Prosecutors, are not surprising, given that the Swedish Police have no official oversight body.
It shouldn’t be surprising, therefore, that the Swedish judiciary should fail to care about the inappropriateness of Lindskog’s lecture in Australia. One should expect, however, that the Swedish Judiciary would be aware of the need to at least appear to be striving towards even-handedness. Clearly the Swedes just make it up as they go along. If it’s politically expedient, apparently it’s acceptable. Their ways are not our ways. What’s the Swedish for the term ‘Conflict of Interest’?
Lipman Karas, lawyers, is the other proud sponsor of the event. Their website boasts of several previous high-level, Australian Government contracts as follows:
They were retained by the Australian Government in relation to the Royal Commission into the HIH collapse;
They were retained to investigate and report in relation to the enquiry into the South Australian Jockey Club; and
They were retained by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) in relation to the investigation into the Crown Casino.
It is interesting that this event was organised immediately after the departure, from Australia, of Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt and after his meeting with decidedly anti-Assange, pro-U.S. Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr. No doubt contacts were established and arrangements made whilst Bildt was still in Australia.
Apparently the Judge intends to discuss Human Rights and Freedom of Speech. Surely there are far more appropriate people to lecture on these issues than a single Swedish jurist, however ’eminent’ this person is considered in Sweden. What is he doing going into these matters, in the context of the Assange matter, when supposedly the sex allegations against Assange are unrelated to the U.S. investigation.
Obviously that will be the part where the Judge repeats claims that the Swedes don’t extradite people where there is potential for Human Rights abuses, a claim which we know to be false. Apparently if it’s said by someone sufficiently ’eminent’, Assange will have to come out of the Embassy.
A better option is for Sweden to withdraw their farcical arrest warrant – then he’ll come out. That way they can save the money they’ll spend on lecture junkets and salvage what’s left of Sweden’s legal reputation at the same time.
This event is yet another example of the Swedish Government’s Judicial-Legal circus and the Australian Government’s complicity in it.
Get ready Adelaide – the circus is coming to town!