Williamrt Profile picture
6 Jan, 44 tweets, 22 min read
Good morning. Today a court will decide whether Julian Assange should be released on bail from Belmarsh Prison, following the decision by Westminster Magistrate's court not to extradite him to the US on espionage charges. #Assange #Assangetrail
I am joining the hearing through remove video link and will report updates here #Assange #Assangetrial #WikiLeaks
The hearing is due to begin at 10 am, and I believe two hours have been allocated. Assange's defence team will apply for costs. #Assange #Assangetrial
On Monday the court ruled that Assange should not be extradited on the grounds that extradition, and the conditions he would face in US prisons, would be oppressive, because of Assange's health conditions. #Assange #Assangetrial
The judge, Vanessa Baraitser dismissed all other defence arguments. #Assange #Assangetrial
The US government has said it will appeal. If that happens, the case is likely to go to the Supreme Court, and will not be over any time soon. #Assange #Assangetrial
We can now see the court room in Westminster Magisrate's court. There are few people there at present. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Here is a report of Monday's decision. It is accompanied by a 132 page judgment and a 79 page annex.

You can read the judgment here.

NGOs and journalists have raised concerns that the verdict will have a chilling effect on investigative journalism, particularly in national security reporting. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Assange has arrived in court wearing a Navy suit and a face covering. #Assange #Assangetrial
The court is taking a ten minute break. We have heard long arguments from Clair Dobbin for the US on why Assange would be a flight risk if he is granted bail #Assange
Dobbin argued that Assange has already shown he will go to great lengths to avoid extradition to the US. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Dobbin argued that WikiLeaks efforts to assist Edward Snowden flee justice in the US show that he cannot be trusted. #Assange #AssangeTrial
She said that Mr Assange and others at WikiLeaks openly displayed their attempts to help Snowden evade arrest. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Assange had arranged distraction operations to assist Snowden, who disclosed thousands of classified documents showing the extent of US mass surveillance, to evade arrest. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Dobbin argued that an offer by Mexico to offer Assange political asylum also increased his risk of absconding. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Court resumes. Fitzgerald speaking for Assange. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Judge Baraitser has refused Assange release on bail. He must remain in Belmarsh prison while he US appeals. #Assange #AssangeTrial
She said "Mr Assange has a huge support network available to him should he go to ground." #Assange #AssangeTrial
The judge said that the US had a right to appeal her decision to discharge Assange. Assange has already shown is ability to abscond, and if he does so again the US will lose the opportunity to appeal. #Assange #AssangeTrial
The judge accepted evidence from Clair Dobbin, contested by Fitzgerald, that three prisoners in Belmarsh prison have Covid and that they had been moved to a Covid spur in the prison away from Assange. #Assange #AssangeTrial
She said that the conditions in Belmarsh bare no comparison to the conditions Assange would face in a US prison. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Judge Baraitser said Assange failed to surrender to the court in December 2012 after he lost his appeal against extradition to Sweden. #AssangeTrial #Assange
He failed to surrender to the court and remained in the Ecuadorian Embassy until his arrest. His express purpose was to avoid extradition to the US, Baraitser said/ #Asssange #AssangeTrial
She said that Assange's mental health conditions were being managed by Belmarsh. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Earlier Edward Fitzgerald QC representing Assange argued that Judge Baraister's ruling in favour of Assange on Monday "had changed everything" when it came to any motive for Assange to abscond. #Assange #AssangeTrial
"The grounds for extradition are gone," he said. "That would be a reason for conditional liberty" #Assange #AssangeTrial
Fitzgerald said that there is now some doubt that the US will continue to pursue the case against Assange under the Biden presidency. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Zachary Terwilliger, the prosecutor driving the Assange case said that he was uncertain whether the case would continue under Biden #AssangeCase #AssangeTrial
Terwilliger: "It will be very interesting to see what happens with this case. There’ll be some decisions to be made. Some of this does come down to resources and where you’re going to focus your energies" #Assange #Assangetrial
See this report here for more on this point:

"This is no the language of this appeal being pursed at all costs," said Fitzgerald. #Assange #AssangeTrial
Fitzgerald had argued that following the ruling on Monday: "Mr Assange has every reason to stay in the jurisdiction where he has the protection of law and every reason to accept bail conditions no matter how stringent". #Assange #AssangeTrial
He said that bail would allow Assange contact with his family and two young children and would anchor him to the community. #AssangeTrial #Assange
He said there was little precedent for courts to overturn rulings to discharge extradition requests for mental health reasons on appeal. #AssangeTrial #Assange
Fitzgerald:"The abscission was eight years ago in a totally different situation, in relation to a totally different request and a different ruling. Since then everything has changed" #Assange #Assangetrial
A significant number of responsible people had offered surety in substantial sums. #Assange #Assangetrial
Dobbins for the US suggested that Assange was at risk of waking into an Embassy in he UK and seeking refuge. #Assange #Assangetrial
She referred to an offer by president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador of Mexico to offer Assange political asylum. #Assange #AssangeTrial More info here:

Fitzgerald, representing Assange said that the offer had been misquoted. Mexico was making an approach to the UK government. It was "going though proper channels to see if he [Assange] can be freed and granted asylum, it is not saying come to our Embassy." #Assange #AssangeTrial
Assange will remain in Belmarsh prison while the case is appealed. He has been held there for 15 months. #Assange #Assangetrial
More later....
Full report here: WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to remain in prison despite winning extradition battle, Judges cites his support of @Snowden as one factor in refusing bail. bit.ly/2JPw5eR via @computerweekly #Assange #Assangetrial

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More from @Williamrt

5 Jan
Journalists and researchers have spoken out over a behind-the-scenes legal threat to bar people living overseas from using the UK Freedom of Information Act. #FOIA #Journalism @benjameslucas @SMaurizi @EmmanFre @manihiki @ComputerWeekly
A tribunal is questioning whether people living outside the UK have legal rights to use the Freedom of Information Act. #FOIA #Journalism
For the past 15 years since the Freedom of Information Act came into force, there has been no geographic barrier to people using the UK’s Freedom of Information Act. #FOIA #Journalism
Read 13 tweets
4 Jan
#Assange extradition verdict is due shortly. I will be reporting on the case through a remote video link to the Old Bailey. #Assange #Assangetrial
We can now see the dock in court 2 of the Old Bailey as we wait for #Assange to arrive. The verdict is scheduled for an hour, but may be over more quickly. #Assange #Assangetrial
Assange has been charged in the US of 17 counts under the US Espionage Act and 1 count under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. #Assange #Assangetrail
Read 48 tweets
24 Nov 20
1/ German photographer, Marco Verch, has posted hundreds of thousands of “free” images across the internet. His photographs have turned into a spiders’ web waiting to trap people who do not follow the exact terms and conditions. @ComputerWeekly #MarcoVerch
2/ Universities, small family businesses and charity organisations are among those to have been ambushed with demands for huge payments after publishing Verch’s apparently “free” images. @ComputerWeekly #MarcoVerch
3/ Patty Knoops founded a volunteer organisation to help older women find work. She received a legal demand for €950 from Verch, precipitating the charity’s closure. She became depressed and unable to work.@ComputerWeekly #MarcoVerch perma.cc/M7LQ-D3PC
Read 25 tweets
30 Sep 20
Its the final week of Julian Assange's extradition trial at the Old Bailey. I am reporting on proceedings through the court video link for @ComputerWeekly. I will report updates here in between taking notes. #Assange
@ComputerWeekly Here is a report from yesterday's hearing which covered conditions in US prisions

@ComputerWeekly Witness statements were read out in court. Patrick Cockburn, Middle East Correspondent for the Independent, Stefania Maurizi, Italian investigative reporter, Guy Goodwin-Gill, former legal adviser to the UN High Commission for Refugees, and US lawyer Robert J Boyle. #Assange
Read 10 tweets
29 Sep 20
Judge grants anonymity of the two witnesses. The names will be disclosed to a confidentiality ring, including a named CPS official, an FBI agent, and names counsel for due diligence.#Assange
Witness 2 approached the law firm of Baltasar Garzón in Madrid requesting anonymity and expressed fears of serious repercussions, according to Summers. #Assange
Later Witness 1 was introduced to the law firm. Both witnesses made a statement anonymously to notary on the basis that they and their families were at risk. #Assange
Read 14 tweets
29 Sep 20
Claire Dobbin for prosecution begins cross examination
Summers for the defence makes an application to grant anonymity to two witnesses to give evidence concerning UC Global, the company which had the contract to provide security services at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London when Assange was there. #Assange
Witness 1 and Witness 2 have been designated as protected witnesses in a case being investigated by a Spanish court #Assange
Read 5 tweets

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