back to article Assange fails to make skipped bail arrest warrant vanish

"Mr Assange is not present at court today," said the judge who denied the cupboard-dwelling WikiLeaker's latest bid to make legal proceedings against him go away. The judgment, handed down this afternoon by the Chief Magistrate of England and Wales, confirmed that the arrest warrant issued in 2012 against Assange for skipping …

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: @Jimmy Page He needs to show that he had reasonable cause to jump bail

        "The best thing for Assange is to get the Ecuadorian Staff to help sneak him out and on to a private flight out of the country."

        Applicable word being "sneak". There's only one, maybe two ways out of there (the building itself is ordinary and the plans can be obtained; only the one section of the upper floor has the diplomatic easement), and part of the expense so far is to guard against that very "sneaking out".

        As for why he refuses to step outside? Because he's afraid of an Extraordinary Rendition or "unfortunate accident" the moment he's out of sight.

        1. Ian Michael Gumby
          Trollface

          @AC ... Re: @Jimmy Page He needs to show that he had reasonable cause to jump bail

          When I was in the UK (London) I walked by the area, not really knowing that was where he was hiding. I saw a bobby standing around... just thought it was normal since that was Embassy row.

          They can sneak him out into an embassy car, so it can't be searched. But what then? Put him in a burlap sack marked as a diplomatic pouch? The watch him get loaded on a diplomatic jet and flown away?

          I mean its possible, but I really can't see that happening.

          What I could see happening is the staff packing his bags, putting him in a car, tricking him in to believing its an embassy car, then dropping a dime on his arse as he's on his way to London City airport.

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            Re: @AC ... @Jimmy Page He needs to show that he had reasonable cause to jump bail

            "They can sneak him out into an embassy car, so it can't be searched."

            The embassy does not have an attached garage (it's upstairs), and there's no diplomatic immunity between the embassy and the car (it passes public property). They know the ways in and out and will be suspicious of ANY goings from that place. And they can't unilaterally designate him a courier because the UK holds rejection power under the Diplomatic Privileges Act.

            1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

              Re: @AC ... @Jimmy Page He needs to show that he had reasonable cause to jump bail

              "They know the ways in and out and will be suspicious of ANY goings from that place."

              Which is probably pissing off the embassy staff no end. 5 years of all their comings and goings being logged and checked. No secret assignations etc for them!

            2. macjules Silver badge

              Re: @AC ... @Jimmy Page He needs to show that he had reasonable cause to jump bail

              I think that they can easy spirit him out the embassy. Using my trusty Google Maps I can see that there is a clear method over the rooftop of the adjoining Colombian Embassy and a quick abseil down to the Harrods staff entrance and he can be on his way with none the wiser.

              Of course the poor cat will have to stay behind.

            3. Ian Michael Gumby

              Re: @AC ... @Jimmy Page He needs to show that he had reasonable cause to jump bail

              I don't know if there's a size limit on a diplomatic pouch. ;-)

              So stuff him in to one...

              I don't know how well it would fly, but you get the idea.

              1. Charles 9 Silver badge

                Re: @AC ... @Jimmy Page He needs to show that he had reasonable cause to jump bail

                No size limit, but the Vienna Convention does state that pouches are ONLY meant for documentation and other official diplomatic business. Meaning anything larger than a briefcase is going to attract attention, and anything large enough to hold a person is going to raise the suspicion of abusing diplomatic immunity, meaning the UK could insist on a search on those grounds (remember, the Diplomatic Privileges Act gives the UK a procedure by which to reject or revoke immunity), and if they turn out to be correct, that's not going to look good for Ecuador since they then risk the UK severing diplomatic relations, and if they're severed justifiably, they won't be able to count on solidarity from the rest of South America.

      2. Androgynous Cupboard Silver badge

        Re: @Jimmy Page He needs to show that he had reasonable cause to jump bail

        Not just his dear old ma - don't forget his kids, which he doesn't forgive or forget being separated from for all this time, apparently. Although I'm still not entirely clear who he's not forgiving

        1. Scroticus Canis
          Holmes

          Re: "not entirely clear who he's not forgiving"

          Well not himself; no need as all narcissists know that it's always someone else's fault, can't be their own as they are perfect in their own eyes.

    1. phuzz Silver badge

      Re: He needs to show that he had reasonable cause to jump bail

      Out of interest, what would be considered reasonable grounds to jump bail?

      I assume that serious illness would do it, but is there anything else?

      (This isn't relevant to Assange, it's a bit late for him to claim he's seriously ill and that the Ecuadorian embassy is the only place he could be treated.)

  1. A K Stiles
    Meh

    Free to leave the Embassy

    Julian has been free to leave the Ecuadorian embassy at any point he chose in the last 5.5 years. It's self-imposed exile, not incarceration.

    Okay, once he steps outside he gets arrested and has to answer for skipping bail (which may or may not have had a financial security posted and ultimately forfeit). After that is resolved they can talk about any other charges he may be required to face in the UK or elsewhere, and whether the UK should or should not extradite him to those places.

    1. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Re: Free to leave the Embassy

      In point of fact, there was a large financial bond placed which was indeed forfeit.

      Turns out that he didn't care about any of his friends very much.

  2. Luke 11
    WTF?

    Ugh

    I hope this traitorous little pig has to stay there for the rest of his life. At least we're not paying for his incarceration this way. The police and SS should harass every single visitor he has in the hope they give up visiting him.

    1. Ian Michael Gumby
      Boffin

      Re: Ugh

      The UK has had to expend serious money to post a guard on the embassy in case he tries to flee yet again.

    2. ThomH Silver badge

      Re: Ugh

      Unfortunately the police presence outside the embassy almost certainly costs more than incarceration would.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Ugh

        "Unfortunately the police presence outside the embassy almost certainly costs more than incarceration would."

        Maybe the Met could just install a CCTV with their new and wonderful and apparently perfect facial recognition software to keep an eye on the door.

  3. 2Nick3

    I assume...

    ...someone is putting the old Mk1 eyeball on him there in the embassy. To know that he is still really there, and not on some south Pacific isle returning to his cabana to record interviews and clips that make it look like he's still there in the UK. White walls are pretty easy to erect, after all. And as long as he's careful to not get a tan he could pull it off.

    Because that would be kind of funny, after all of this.

    1. Ian Michael Gumby
      Black Helicopters

      Re: I assume...

      yeah. He's still there.

      Mk1? In the US that could either be a US Optics / Leupold / Nightforce scope sitting on a nice .308 tactical rifle, or something similar. :-)

      Not that they'll shoot. Just watching and waiting...

  4. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge

    He skipped

    bail ... end of

    What it would mean to the criminal justice system with asshole winning would be

    "Run from bail long enough and we'll drop charges"

    Yeah.. great result for our leaker in chief and scourge of the corrupt western democracies

    Hey some scumbags broken into my flat, nicked all my PC/camera gear and microwaved my kitten... oh thats a relife hes been arrested, charged and bailed.....and done a runner..... hey whats this.. because of asshat setting a precident, and mr scumbag being on the run for 5 years, mr scumbag is going to be let off.....

    And as I've pointed out many a time here, Assange would have spent less time in jail if sent to Sweden and convicted than hes spent in the embassy......

    1. ThomH Silver badge

      Re: He skipped

      With perfect hindsight, I guess the smartest thing would have been to turn himself in at the Swedish embassy before being arrested by the British police. Sweden doesn't extradite for political offences, or for offences relating to political offences. I guess he was paranoid about what could happen to him in transit.

      1. Richard 12 Silver badge

        Re: He skipped

        The smart thing to do would have been to turn up to the interview in Sweden instead of running away to the UK.

        No, sorry, the smart thing to do would have been to not have sex without a condom in the first place.

        (As far as I can tell he never disputed that part, just whether the woman had consented to it)

  5. Marcus Fil
    Coat

    How tall is he and what does he weigh?

    You can see where I, or rather he, is going with this? He only needs some regular visitors of similar stature and a talented MUA on a particularly dreary Thursday and he is gone. Next to get out of the country, but I am told that is not at all difficult.

    Not that I am actually advocating two fingers up to the MPS and 5, but as a tax payer I do think resources would be better spent elsewhere. Plus for an Australian he is mighty pasty which cannot be good for him. Where he should actually reveal himself once out of Blighty I leave to him. I would think CIA will have less qualms about actions on the streets of Quito than those of good old London town.

    Icon because, well, are you sure that is me?

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: How tall is he and what does he weigh?

      You don't think they'd be suspicious of people who match his physical build and check for makeup? Or perhaps come up with a way to make sure the person going out is the same one coming in? As I've said before, Scotland Yard isn't stupid.

      1. BebopWeBop

        Re: How tall is he and what does he weigh?

        Well hopefully they are not. But past behaviours don't give me great confidence.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Screw him, let him rot in there ....

    Doesn't matter what his arguments are for skipping bail and hiding, that doesn't change the simple fact fact that he broke his bail conditions and decided to try and get away with it, never mind the fact that he's basically managed to (allegedly) get away with raping someone just by running away and refusing to face questioning.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Lauri Love case proves there is zero probability of Assange actually being extradited to the US therefore we can conclude that he expects to be found guilty in Sweden.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Have you considered Extraordinary Rendition? Or just an "unfortunate accident"?

      1. Andrew Norton

        Yes, we've all considered 'extraordinary rendition' and 'unfortunate accident'.

        Problem is, he spent 600 days in the UK where he traveled a fixed route on foot, in a rural area, at a set time every single day (when he was reporting for bail). If there was going to be an extraordinary rendition, or an accident, it would have happened there and then.

        Likewise with a US extradition request, which would have competed with the Swedish one (leading the Foreign office and the judiciary to come to a decision) at least right up until the final Supreme Court ruling, two days before he ran to the embassy which made the Swedish extradition final and permanent.

        Also, more fun facts, every one else investigated by the [now disbanded] Grand Jury, has had no such fears, even though they did the actual work on the cables and videos, and didn't just write a press release. Some even visited the US in 2013 and had no problems, no arrests, etc.

        If you have (or had) little kids, you'll understand the bedtime problem. Every time it's bedtime, there's something else that just came up that means they can't go to sleep; they're hungry, they want a glass of water, there's a monster under the bed, read them a story etc. The claims about the US are nothing but 'monster under the bed is going to eat me' claims.

    2. The People

      I might accuse most of these senseless comments as originating form some sad Clinton foundation shill, however humouring the lack of intelligence I might respond simply to those who get carried along by such mindless tripe... NO!

      Comparing Lauri to Assange shows either a desperate attempt at deceit, or a reckless act of ignorance. Know your subject!

      1. Sir Runcible Spoon
        Trollface

        @The People

        Troll on.

        Just for future reference, accusing people of being shills is typically taken as projection on this forum.

  8. sjsmoto

    Just load him into a diplomatic mailing crate and send it to Ecuador. Or the South Pole.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Judging by his current complexion the south pole would be a good place to hide, he'd be damn impossible to spot.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    bit of an ass

    I know Assange (tm) is a bit of an ass and it is de rigueur to take the mickey on el reg.

    But I have no doubt that he is innocent of what he was charged and the whole thing was a set-up by various governments completely prepared to abuse their position of power to silence Wikileaks.

    We all benefit from a press in which journalists are free from persecution.

    Nuf sed, back to laughing at the narcissist who hasnt comeout of the closet.

    Posting anonymously because I can.

    1. Killing Time

      Re: bit of an ass

      Unfortunately a lot of people don't share your unflinching belief in his innocence or your willingness to don a tinfoil hat to justify his actions, I include myself in that group.

      I would like to think I reserve my judgement based on evidence and testimony. All evidence I see so far is that he has broken UK law in jumping bail. He claims he did this to avoid some grand conspiracy but conveniently it enables him to avoid testimony or possibly evidence on other charges.

      'bit of an ass' is the most flattering description I can think of. Criminal and fugitive from the UK courts would be more accurate and factual.

      1. The People

        Re: bit of an ass

        You missed something. That being the entire history of how Assange got to where he is.

        How convenient , as you say, truth is you know nothing, yet sadly a comment is dispensed anyway.

        Because these anti Assange comments show no insight beyond the most recent event being the bail predicament, many are left taking them at face value which is clearly the intent of the mass postings. The ignorance shown in these comments arouses the strongest suspicion as their very legitimacy. So one can only hope the proportion of ignorance displayed within these comments is not representative of the same percentile of the population of the UK. It is a very sad day indeed if that were true and the world would indeed be doomed.

        1. Sir Runcible Spoon

          Re: bit of an ass

          I think you'll find that most of the people commenting on this story have been following it since the beginning, so a certain amount of foreknowledge is assumed when reading these posts.

          Constantly accusing people of knowing nothing, yet not contributing any evidence as to what they don't know is deceitful.

          So one can only hope the proportion of ignorance displayed within these comments is not representative of the same percentile of the population of the UK

          No, I think you can safely say that it is not representative of the population as a whole, because most of the population are indeed ignorant of such matters.

        2. LucreLout
          Stop

          Re: bit of an ass - @The People

          Give it a rest Julian.

        3. Killing Time

          Re: bit of an ass

          'how Assange got to where he is' is immaterial.

          A medical doctor can do an enormous amount of 'good' yet still commit a crime. Should that doctor avoid due process based on how he got to where he is? I know the law definitely does and I think most reasonable people would say no.

          Not that I am directly comparing St Jules to a medical doctor of course, there is no comparison between the two.

          Dismiss the point if you wish, as you dismiss other opposing opinions. You could try joining his defence team and present your 'argument' where it could actually make a difference. sadly though I think, if you were lucky, you would be laughed out of court.

    2. Likkie

      Re: bit of an ass

      "the whole thing was a set-up by various governments completely prepared to abuse their position of power to silence Wikileaks."

      It hasn't silenced Wikileaks. Wikileaks is more than Assange.

      In founding Wikileaks he did something great but I think that was the pinnacle.

      Sweden is one of the least corrupt and most transparent countries in the world. In 2016 it ranked 4th when the UK ranked 10th.

      If the USA was going to try to orchestrate something Sweden would not be the partner of choice. If fake charges are going to be created in order to get him into some place more accessible by the USA you'd want to use a country that has some degree of credibility but with an opaque and corruptible administration. What you and others suggest doesn't make sense.

      What really happened is that Julian Assange allegedly sexually mistreated a partner in a way that is illegal in Sweden and then used his position and connections to avoid questioning and possible charges. Sounds a bit Weinsteiny to me...

      https://www.transparency.org/news/feature/corruption_perceptions_index_2016

  10. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Sitting Governments Trump Sitting Judges with Simple Fake Letters?

    When the Law is an Ass, and a Option not to be Exercised, are Governments Guilty of Unreasonable Treason, and Justice Systems, of Gross Dereliction of Duty and Service? ........

    Downey was charged with the Hyde Park murders and stood trial at the Old Bailey in 2013.

    But the case dramatically collapsed after it was revealed he had received a written assurance from former prime minister Tony Blair’s government that he was no longer wanted.

    The letter was issued under the terms of the controversial On The Runs (OTRs) scheme.

    Trial judge Mr Justice Sweeney ruled that Downey’s arrest at Gatwick Airport, as he transited the UK on the way to a holiday, represented an abuse of process and he put a stay on any future prosecution. ...... https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/ira-bomb-victims-brother-granted-legal-aid-to-sue-hyde-park-suspect-36573085.html

    Some storms are bigger than others and some are politically incorrect witch hunts which are self-defeating and most revealing.

  11. The Nazz

    Further to amanfrommars' post, anyone wish to spend two minutes reading this : http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-42965637 referencing Operation Midland.

    One of many, many instances where cases of a certain nature are collapsing.

    Simply because someone makes allegations does not mean that they are necessarily true or factually correct.

    Genuine question : Are the Police and CPS themselves immune from a charge of "Perverting the course of justice" when they prosecute a case with specifically chosen, or rather deliberately omitted, evidence to fit their own bias and agenda?

    AIUI from the CPS's own website, the offence of ""Perverting the course of justice" is committed when the INTENT to do so is formented.

    On the collapse of a recent trial didn't the Judge basically give the Police and CPS a short period to reflect and get back to him with an answer of basically, wtf is going on?

    As for Assange, que sera sera.

    Can't they just sentence him in absentia, say 6 months for skipping bail, then he knows where he stands for whenever he decides to do something about his situation.

    1. The People
      Holmes

      Good points. Absentia? Not really. Else how then would they be able to excise their premeditated "he escaped" cover up in lieu of his most certain extraordinary rendition, come the moment he steps outside the embassy?

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Apparently, Assange is the most wanted man in Britain

    According to the "hang him, he's broken one of our really important rules" brigade.

    It's a pity the authorities aren't just as enthusiastic about investigating and prosecuting real criminals. But hey, if it means we can get some more low hanging fruit into prison, at £40,000 / year (after all it's only tax payers money), on top of the millions already spent, that's a success in their vindictive little world.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Apparently, Assange is the most wanted man in Britain

      I believe Tony Blair is still walking the streets a free man.

      Or the people involved in the illegal rendition.

      Lying to Parliament and conspiracy to torture / murder is apparently fine but jumping bail - well that's a whole different league.

  13. Alowe

    The law is just a trap. It can never be trusted.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Learn your facts. Now leave!

    An image for you.

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DVXzKWHXUAAxwZL.jpg

  15. Winkypop Silver badge
    Devil

    I feel sorry for the guy!

    Naaah.....

  16. Jove Bronze badge

    He should do the decent thing, and spare us all the misery.

  17. fredfs

    If Dick Cheney and his crew

    were hiding out in a embassy, I could get into the bail-jumping-is-bad discussion, but that is far from the case.

    The important issues here are the United States committing war crimes, the NSA exceeding its constitutional limits when collecting data on citizens, backroom deals keeping Bernie Sanders off of the ballot, and the CIA stockpiling hacking tools. One case of bail jumping simply does not compare.

    All the arguments about extradition procedure don't hold water either. It has been an extremely dark decade and a half for the United States, and legal norms do not necessarily apply. We had legislators calling for the execution of Chelsea Manning, a New York Times reporter in jail for contempt of court, at least one prisoner dying of hypothermia at a dark site, torture around the world, and during this whole period, we have had prisoners at Guantánamo Bay who have yet to receive due process. Anyone who truly jeopardizes this power structure can legitimately fear extrajudicial retaliation by Washington. That is why an embassy shielded this particular bail jumper.

    As many have said before, you don't have to like Julian Assange. He may not have the style of a Gandhi or Mandela; he may be more of a self-promoter than a Manning, Snowden, or Aaron Swartz. But recognize that what little social progress we make every decade, we owe that progress to the misfits, the fed-up, the brave, and the difficult -- and we punish them severely for it.

  18. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    The Nature of Existence, both Real and Virtual, but not as you may currently know and experience it

    Whenever Great Games are Rigged, are you Pwnd and as a Puppet ..... and fully expected to play further as a Prize Fool and Sub-Prime Tool confined by right dodgy rules for Remote Regulation .... in Invisible Fields of Intangible Virtual Command and Control.

    Who/what pulls your strings, and has you dancing a merry dance on the warpath to their tunes?

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