Brits Threaten Assange’s Human Rights As Swedes Abandon Sex Smear

By Andrew Kreig

British authorities threatened WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange with arrest on a bond-jumping charge last week after their Swedish counterparts gave up trying to investigate Assange on what appears to have been a dubious series of sex claims that have been pending against him for nearly seven years since his 2010 speaking trip to Stockholm.

Julian Assange in graphic by The IndicterThe British effort, if pursued aggressively with threatened punishment beyond the norm, would further compound a travesty of justice that has already disgraced the Swedish and British legal systems.

The Swedes have wasted vast amounts of taxpayer money for the probe, as have the British in the latter’s around-the-clock surveillance of Assange for years cost millions of pounds. The evidence suggest that both nations have undertaken such extraordinary actions to thwart WikiLeaks and not to investigate claims arising out of consensual sex with two Swedish women who invited Assange to sleep with them separately before complaints arose. 

Assange is shown in a graphic by the European human rights magazine The Indicter. Designated by a United Nations body 15 months ago as the victim of unlawful detention stemming from a political prosecution, Assange has lived since 2012 in Ecuador’s London embassy.

Ecuador granted Assange political asylum from Sweden’s demand, affirmed by Britain’s courts, for Assange’s extradition to face renewed questioning. Sweden has never charged the WikiLeaks founder with an offense but has instead insisted until recently that he must return to Sweden for questions about sexual activities, even though the initial prosecutor questioning him found no basis for charging him before her supervisors dismissed her from the case.

Swedish flagAssange has argued that Western intelligence, court and media operatives had orchestrated the entire sex smear as a pretext to arrange his extradition to the United States so he could be prosecuted on more serious charges arising from secret proceedings against WikiLeaks.

The transparency organization’s disclosures have embarrassed and infuriated top officials of several Western nations, most recently because of WikiLeaks disclosures that seriously embarrassed Democrats in the 2016 election campaign.

Right from the start in 2010, independent observers described the Swedish probe as highly irregular in ways that tainted authorities, their witnesses, and the merit of their claims.

Shameful Swedish Tactics

Last December, our update Assange Rape Defense Underscores Shameful Swedish, U.S. Tactics drew on the previous six years of reporting by varied U.S. and international media that portrayed Sweden’s proceedings as an attempted frame-up heavily tainted with extra-legal dimensions, including intelligence-connected personnel.

In that column and in our own investigative reports published by U.S. and Swedish media beginning in late 2010, we have emphasized that our defense of Assange centered on due process regarding the sex claims against him, and not legality or wisdom of the WikiLeaks’  wholesale release of sensitive documents. Those wider issues are ostensibly beyond the scope of the Swedish and British legal proceedings.

Marcello Ferrada de NoliAt the forefront of debunking the Swedish sex claims in recent years has been The Indicter, a European-based human rights publication founded by Dr. Marcello Ferrada de Noli, a retired Swedish medical school professor shown in a portrait. This editor serves on its board.

In January, The Indicter  published New Analysis of Swedish Police Report Confirms Julian Assange’s Version in Sweden’s case by Celia Farber, an author and investigative reporter.

She concluded that the crucial allegations against Assange, “as have appeared in the Swedish and international media,” were constructed by the police “and were not what the complainants really said or wished to achieve.”   

Farber, unlike most writers intimidated either by political correctness, powerful government sources or both, dared explore the specifics of the sex claim allegations, as summarized immediately below.

Swedish Complainant Reported As Angry With Investigators

Most mainstream Western publications, including those in Sweden, have been protected the identities and claims of the two female complainants so much that readers cannot follow the allegations, much less assess their weight.

Elisabeth Massi-Fritz via Twitter photoThus the Washington Post report on May 19, Sweden drops Assange rape allegation, but Britain says WikiLeaks founder still faces arrest by reporter Karla Adam, described attorney Elisabeth Massi Fritz (shown in her Twitter photo) as saying Sweden’s decision to drop the case constituted “a scandal.” The report described the attorney as representing one of the complainants but failed to identify the client or either of the complainants.

Naomi Wolf Facebook

By contrast, Farber’s work involves close analysis of the facts and builds such previous inquiries as that of best-selling feminist author Naomi Wolf (shown in a file photo below). Wolf from the outset in 2010 questioned why the identities of the complainants were being kept confidential, especially given the many usual features of the case. Wolf’s views are summarized in her columns:

“Never in twenty-three years of reporting on and supporting victims of sexual assault around the world,” she wrote in J’Accuse: Sweden, Britain, and Interpol Insult Rape Victims Worldwide, published by the Huffington Post in 2010, “have I ever heard of a case of a man sought by two nations, and held in solitary confinement without bail in advance of being questioned — for any alleged rape, even the most brutal or easily proven.”

She continued: “In terms of a case involving the kinds of ambiguities and complexities of the alleged victims’ complaints — sex that began consensually, that allegedly became non-consensual when dispute arose around a condom — please find me, anywhere in the world, another man in prison today without bail on charges of anything comparable.”

Wolf called for naming the complainants as the appropriate journalistic and feminist way to treat such a case, as noted in her Julian Assange’s sex-crime accusers deserve to be named.

Wolf withstood push-back by other feminists who were outraged that she did not automatically endorse the female complainants and prosecution. In the spirit of a more universal commitment to justice, Wolf then published in New York City’s “News from Underground” a harsh assessment of the entire investigation, Eight BIG PROBLEMS with the “case” against Assange, which she subtitled “Something Rotten in the State of Sweden.”

The complainants were Anna Ardin and Sofia Wilén, shown below. The former worked for a group that organized the ill-fated speaking event for Assange in August 2010, which occurred just as several prominent authorities in the West were calling for Assange’s silencing by any means possible, including (as former White House advisor Karl Rove said on Fox News) by execution.

Wilén was an attendee at the conference who sought out Assange’s company. She, like Ardin, invited Assange to her home, had sex, participated in his company and then complained about his behavior to authorities.

Anna Ardin and Sofia Wilen

Wilen’s story is particularly mysterious to researchers because it appears that she has totally disappeared from public view, beginning right after her allegations in 2010. In early 2014, the Swedish alternative publication Rixstep Industry Watch published, Where in the world is Sofia Wilén? The column’s headline continued: Who knows where she’s come from or where she’s gone to now?

It’s been over three years since anyone’s heard from or seen Sofia Wilén, the individual behind the embassy stalemate for Julian Assange. Sofia turned up on several occasions for interrogations with the police, always assisted by her attorney Claes Borgström, but it’s not known if she turned up in person or was merely interrogated by telephone as many of the other witnesses. Sofia recently changed attorneys, expressing dissatisfaction with Claes Borgström.

Furthermore, if Sweden had filed any charges they would not have been adjudicated in public or by a jury. These kinds of evidence and procedural matters are almost never reported by mainstream news accounts, which usually simplify the issues into what amounts to a smear: that Assange was accused of rape and other sexual misconduct by unidentified young women.

What’s Next

As reported by the Washington Post:

Last week, The Swedish Prosecution Authority said in a statement that Sweden’s director of public prosecution, Marianne Ny, “today decided to discontinue the investigation” into a rape claim against Assange.” The Post further reported that Assange has disputed the rape allegation and also argued that he risked being extradited by Sweden to the United States and tried for espionage.

Per Samuelson, Assange’s attorney, said in an emailed statement that Assange had “proved his innocence.” The case was closed, he wrote, “because an innocent man proved he was not guilty!”

Marianne NyBut Swedish officials said the decision only drops the case and is not a ruling on Assange’s guilt or innocence. The attorney for Assange’s accuser said it was a “scandal” that the case was not tried in court. In explaining why Sweden was dropping the investigation, Ny (shown in an official photo) told a news conference in Stockholm that “all possibilities to advance the investigation have now been exhausted” and that the legal proceedings could continue only if Assange were present in Sweden.

Ny’s words appear to represent more obfuscation by either a zealot or a puppet, as indicated by the history of her nation’s oppressive tactics.

Her office’s authoritarian procedures and goals contradict Sweden’s conventional public image as a bastion of human rights and rule of law but not necessarily that of a nation that bends its legal procedures, as in the past, to the needs of its power structure and their international allies, most especially the United States.

Martin Fredriksson WikimediaAs an example of those patterns, Swedish media were jolted last year by the revelation that Martin Fredriksson (shown in a file photo), a prominent leftist “journalist” who opposed WikiLeaks and Assange, was an operative of Sweden’s intelligence service.

The Indicter published details: Paid agent of Swedish security services implicated in second disinformation campaign against Assange, which began “In the first part of this series, The Indicter exposed that a former paid agent of Sweden’s Security Police had intervened with Amnesty Sweden (the Swedish section of Amnesty International), directly dictating its negative stance towards Julian Assange.”

United Kingdom flag

Now Britain reportedly wants to prosecute Assange for seeking political asylum instead of reporting for extradition. In an honest system, that charge could be reasonably resolved, including with mutual agreement for jail time. In a dishonest system, it would be reasonable for a defendant to conclude that the system cannot be trusted to adjudicate a bond-jumping claim even in the face of United Nations determination of illegal detention and all the rest of these abuses.

Related News Coverage (Reverse chronology order by publication date)

Sweden Drops Claims Against WikiLeaks Founder; UK Charges Bail-Jumping

Washington Post, Sweden drops Assange rape allegation, but Britain says WikiLeaks founder still faces arrest, Karla Adam, May 19, 2017. Swedish prosecutors on Friday dropped their investigation into a rape allegation against Julian Assange, closing a nearly seven-year legal saga that led the WikiLeaks founder to seek sanctuary at the Ecuadoran Embassy in London. But British police said that Assange still faces arrest for jumping bail if he walks out of diplomatic protection, which he claims is needed to keep him from being extradited to the United States to face charges of disclosing confidential military and diplomatic documents.

The Swedish Prosecution Authority said in a statement that Sweden’s director of public prosecution, Marianne Ny, “today decided to discontinue the investigation” into a rape claim against Assange. Assange has disputed the rape allegation. He also argued that he risked being extradited by Sweden to the United States and tried for espionage.

He took refuge in the embassy in 2012. Assange’s lawyer, Per Samuelson, said in an emailed statement that Assange had “proved his innocence.” The case was closed, he wrote, “because an innocent man proved he was not guilty!”

But Swedish officials said the decision only drops the case and is not a ruling on Assange’s guilt or innocence. The attorney for Assange’s accuser said it was a “scandal” that the case was not tried in court. In explaining why Sweden was dropping the investigation, Ny told a news conference in Stockholm that “all possibilities to advance the investigation have now been exhausted” and that the legal proceedings could continue only if

The Indicter, New Analysis of Swedish Police Report Confirms Julian Assange’s Version in Sweden’s case, Celia Farber, Jan. 3, 2017. Author and investigative reporter Celia Farber concludes that the police reports  confirm Julian Assange’s testimony, as given to the prosecutor in her questioning conducted at the Ecuadorian embassy in London. It  has also been established that the crucial allegations against Mr Julian Assange, as have appeared in the Swedish and international media were constructed by the police and were not what the complainants really said or wished to achieve.

It has been discovered that it was the police, or the prosecutor’s office, which unlawfully and/or unethically leaked the “allegations” to the evening paper Expressen, which is clearly known for its declared NATO sympathies. Regrettably, but also predictably, this was an opportunity for Western mainstream media to create a scandal around the founder of WikiLeaks. Likewise, it was an occasion used by the MSM to insidiously attack the organization that had partly exposed the corruption of the governments they represent, and partly surpassed them in journalistic efficacy and objectivity.

The IndicterBut it was more than purely vendetta-time; it was a well-articulated campaign which started that day in August 2010 when – according to the Snowden documents– the US government asked the countries participating in the military occupation of Afghanistan under US command to prosecute Julian Assange. Sweden obeyed; others cooperated.

Nevertheless, the Afghan Logs and the Iraq Logs exposed by WikiLeaks remained published. The WikiLeaks founder did not surrender. The Assange case, already politically in its origins, turned into a spiral of increasing geopolitical dimensions.

Our position has always been that the above-described political aspect has always been present in the ‘Assange case’ and we could hardly be – in principle – interested in furthering a discussion on details pertaining the intimacy of Mr Assange or of other people around the constructed ‘legal case.’

Daily Mail, Ex-British ambassador who is now a WikiLeaks operative claims Russia did NOT provide Clinton emails; they were handed over to him at a D.C. park by an intermediary for ‘disgusted’ Democratic whistleblowers, Alana Goodman, Dec. 14, 2016. A Wikileaks envoy today claims he personally received Clinton campaign emails in Washington D.C. after they were leaked by ‘disgusted’ whisteblowers – and not hacked by Russia. Craig Murray, former British ambassador to Uzbekistan and a close associate of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, told Dailymail.com that he flew to Washington, D.C. for a clandestine hand-off with one of the email sources in September. [See Mr. Murray Goes to Washington,]

Craig Murray former UK Ambassador‘Neither of [the leaks] came from the Russians,’ said Murray (shown in a file photo) in an interview with Dailymail.com on Tuesday. ‘The source had legal access to the information. The documents came from inside leaks, not hacks.’

His account contradicts directly the version of how thousands of Democratic emails were published before the election being advanced by U.S. intelligence.

Murray is a controversial figure who was removed from his post as a British ambassador amid allegations of misconduct. He was cleared of those but left the diplomatic service in acrimony. His links to Wikileaks are well known and while his account is likely to be seen as both unprovable and possibly biased, it is also the first intervention by Wikileaks since reports surfaced last week that the CIA believed Russia hacked the Clinton emails to help hand the election to Donald Trump.

Murray’s claims about the origins of the Clinton campaign emails comes as U.S. intelligence officials are increasingly confident that Russian hackers infiltrated both the Democratic National Committee and the email account of top Clinton aide John Podesta. In Podesta’s case, his account appeared to have been compromised through a basic ‘phishing’ scheme, the New York Times reported on Wednesday.

U.S. intelligence officials have reportedly told members of Congress during classified briefings that they believe Russians passed the documents on to Wikileaks as part of an influence operation to swing the election in favor of Donald Trump.

Assange were present in Sweden.

Justice Integrity Project, Assange Rape Defense Underscores Shameful Swedish, U.S. Tactics, Andrew Kreig, Dec. 12, 2016. WikiLeaks Swedish flagfounder Julian Assange last week refuted the dubious rape prosecution Sweden began against him in August 2010. Assange’s written response on Dec. 7, with his first detailed defense, underscores the disgraceful procedures used by Sweden, the United States, and the United Kingdom, with the complicity of most mainstream media outlets because of their pattern of omitting evidence in biased news accounts.

With the zeal and arrogance of a police state, Sweden has repeatedly violated due process under a veneer of legal and human rights rhetoric. Sweden’s use of sexual misconduct claims to capture Assange stems from coordinated reprisal by the three nations for his WikiLeaks publication in 2010 that included some 250,000 classified U.S. diplomatic cables and “The Afghan Diaries,” a trove of 80,000 documents.

These materials exposed diplomatic hypocrisy (including regarding Sweden’s ostensible “neutrality”) suspected war crimes, and cover-up by Sweden and NATO members.

The Hill, WikiLeaks claims Obama hacking probe is investigating WikiLeaks, Katie Bo Williams, Dec. 9, 2016. Anti-secrecy platform WikiLeaks on Friday claimed President Obama’s probe into Russian interference in the U.S. election was an investigation into WikiLeaks itself. “CNN: Obama orders report into WikiLeaks timed for release just prior to Trump presidency,” the group tweeted, linking to a CNN report about the hacking review that does not mention WikiLeaks. WikiLeaks throughout the election published troves of hacked documents believed to have been stolen by Russia. It has vociferously denied any links to Moscow.

New York Times, WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange Denies Rape in Detailed Account of Encounter, Dan Bilefsky, Dec. 7, 2016. Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder, offered his most detailed and public account on Wednesday of events that led to a rape accusation against him in Sweden, saying he was innocent and had engaged in “consensual and enjoyable sex” with the accuser.

Julian Assange 2014Last month, questions prepared by Swedish prosecutors were posed to Mr. Assange at the Ecuadorean Embassy, where he has been living since 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden over the rape accusation. The questions were asked by an Ecuadorean prosecutor under an agreement made by the two countries in August.

But in a move that is likely to irk Swedish prosecutors, whom Mr. Assange has denounced for forcing him to remain confined in the embassy for the past six years, the WikiLeaks founder on Wednesday released the answers he gave during the interview. In the 19-page statement, which reads alternately like a legal defense brief and an emotional airing of personal grievances, he writes that he is “entirely innocent” and had engaged in “consensual and enjoyable” sex with the woman who accused him of rape.

WikiLeaks has courted controversy by publishing confidential and damaging information from the United States and other countries. During the American presidential election, WikiLeaks came under renewed scrutiny for distributing hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee, and Mr. Assange acknowledged that he was timing their release to do maximum harm to the White House prospects of Hillary Clinton.

Mr. Assange, 45, an Australian, has refused to go to Sweden to face the rape accusation for fear, he says, of being extradited to the United States and being jailed for life, even though the Swedish authorities have sought to allay such concerns. No formal charges have been filed against him.

Guardian, Julian Assange defies Swedish prosecutors by releasing rape statement, David Crouch, Dec. 7, 2016. WikiLeaks founder publishes answers he gave during questioning in Ecuador’s London embassy over rape allegationJulian Assange has thumbed his nose at Swedish investigators, who he says have robbed him of his freedom for six years, by releasing the answers he gave to them under questioning in Ecuador’s London embassy last month.

The decision to issue the statement, which contains for the first time a detailed account by the WikiLeaks founder of his encounter with a woman in August 2010 who made rape allegations against him, marks a fresh twist in a case in which Assange claims an early leak of information from the Swedish police has shaped opinion.

The Indicter, Controversy over WikiLeaks Podesta Emails Opens a Debate for Future Journalism, Nozomi Hayase, Nov. 3, 2016. In its 10th years of existence, WikiLeaks has been at the center of controversy. Ever since its global debut with the 2010 Apache helicopter gun-sight video depicting the killing of civilians in Baghdad, the whistleblowing site has consistently exposed the naked power of empire for the world to see. As a result, the organization has been subject to relentless retaliation. With banking blockades, a secret grand jury and constant character assassination of its founder Julian Assange, who remains arbitrarily detained in the Ecuadorian embassy, the U.S. government’s efforts to divert public attention from evidence of its own crimes have quickly escalated into a war on the First Amendment.

The IndicterWikiLeaks’ publications influenced the outcome of a Kenyan election and played a role in instigating the Icelandic revolution. Now, by means of email leaks, they began informing U.S. voters of the real working of Corporate America’s tradition of lesser-evil politics.

After the DNC email leaks that led to the resignation of top DNC officials, WikiLeaks has intensified its activity. Since October 7, they began publishing emails from the private account of Hillary Clinton’s campaign chair John Podesta. The archive contained transcripts of Clinton’s paid Goldman Sachs speeches that show her two faces and total disconnect from the middle class. It also revealed her private remarks dismissing climate activists. As usual, the leaks have been condemned by the status quo and Clinton loyalists. This time, a narrative that ‘Vladimir Putin was meddling in the election’ was used to discredit their publication, with the mainstream media creating an echo chamber of McCarthy-era style hysteria.

CraigMurray.org, Mr. Murray Goes to Washington, Craig Murray, Sept. 15, 2016. After a 16,000 person petition to the State Department and letter writing and lobbying including by Jeremy Corbyn, Roger Waters and Daniel Ellsberg, I have been granted a 10-year US visa. I will be going to Washington in a week to have the great honor to chair the presentation of the Sam Adams Award to John Kiriakou – the CIA agent who blew the whistle on waterboarding, and was jailed for it as part of the disgraceful Obama/Clinton War on Whistleblowers. I shall also be speaking at the World Beyond War conference at American University on the subject of peaceful conflict resolution.

The Indicter, Paid agent of Swedish security services implicated in second disinformation campaign against Assange, Marcello Ferrada de Noli (shown in a file photo), March 13, 2016. In the first part of this series, The Indicter exposed that a former paid agent of Sweden’s Security Police had intervened with Amnesty Sweden (the Swedish section of Amnesty International), directly dictating its negative stance towards Julian Assange.

In this article, I analyze whether Swedish government security agents, or ‘former agents,’ have been further involved in a disinformation campaign against the founder of WikiLeaks and its whistleblower publishing. An important source here is the activity of Researchgruppen (aka Research Group), the journalist-collective organization led by Martin Fredriksson, a former paid agent of the Swedish Security Police – or, as it’s better known by its Swedish acronym, SÄPO.

Researchgruppen is an organization founded by Martin Fredriksson (shown in a portrait via Wikimedia) and others in 2010 (while he was still a paid agent of SÄPO) that claims to target extreme right-wing or right-conservative parties, organizations that, however, all share a staunch opposition to the incorporation of Sweden into NATO. Researchgruppen has also received support and assignments from Expressen, one of the main Swedish evening newspapers, well-known for leading an earlier campaign against WikiLeaks and Assange.

The “My Special Interests” programs are podcasts in which the ex-SÄPO agent and guests – occasionally including other collaborators working as SÄPO agents, besides Fredriksson – share opinions on topics built around the political and geopolitical stances of Researchgruppen. Many of these stances are, in fact, very similar to the views held by prominent Swedish politicians who have been exposed by WikiLeaks as having provided information to U.S. intelligence services, such as in the case of former Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt.

A prominent characteristic of the podcasts is their harsh criticism of Julian Assange, combined with a fierce anti-Russian bias – particularly targeting Russia’s president Vladimir Putin. The podcasts – so far 22 programs have been produced – are each about one hour long.

The Indicter, Former paid agent of Swedish Security Police dictated Amnesty Sweden’s stance against Assange, Marcello Ferrada de Noli, (Chairman of Swedish Doctors for Human Rights), March 6, 2016. The IndicterSvenska Dagbladet (SVD), one of Sweden’s leading newspapers, has now revealed that a well-known journalist and ‘left activist’ – who, among other things, exerted considerable influence with Amnesty International Sweden – was a paid agent of Sweden’s Security Police (SÄPO).

Svenska Dagbladet (SVD) (Swedish daily newspaper), When the real Salander sold out to Sapo, Sam Sundberg, March 2, 2016. (Translated by Google, with JIP editorial revisions). One of the more nationally famous left activists, Martin Fredriksson, released this day a bomb in social media. In a groovy Twitter, he reveals that he was for many years a paid Sapo informant during a time when he has been active in the Antifascist Action and Research Group.

Martin Fredriksson WikimediaFredriksson (shown in a file photo) is best known as co-founder in the journalist community of the Research Group, which conducted an extensive digging job of the right-wing’s digital activities. In cooperation with the Expressen and Aftonbladet newspapers, he revealed the anonymous authors of racist sites Exposed, Free Times and Avpixlat and hateful writers on the web forum Flashback.

For a collaboration with Expressen, Fredriksson, along with five colleagues in the Research Group, has been awarded the guldspaden, one of Sweden’s greatest prizes for investigative journalism. He has also worked as a researcher for Robert Aschberg TV show “Insider.”

The Indicter, New Analysis of Swedish Police Report Confirms Julian Assange’s Version in Sweden’s case, Celia Farber, Jan. 3, 2017. Author and investigative reporter Celia Farber concludes that the police reports confirm Julian Assange’s testimony, as given to the prosecutor in her questioning conducted at the Ecuadorian embassy in London. It has also been established that the crucial allegations against Mr Julian Assange, as have appeared in the Swedish and international media, were constructed by the police and were not what the complainants really said or wished to achieve.

The IndicterIt has been discovered that it was the police, or the prosecutor’s office, which unlawfully and/or unethically leaked the “allegations” to the evening paper Expressen, which is clearly known for its declared NATO sympathies. Regrettably, but also predictably, this was an opportunity for Western mainstream media to create a scandal around the founder of WikiLeaks. Likewise, it was an occasion used by the MSM to insidiously attack the organization that had partly exposed the corruption of the governments they represent, and partly surpassed them in journalistic efficacy and objectivity.

But it was more than purely vendetta-time; it was a well-articulated campaign which started that day in August 2010 when – according to the Snowden documents– the US government asked the countries participating in the military occupation of Afghanistan under US command to prosecute Julian Assange. Sweden obeyed; others cooperated.

Nevertheless, the Afghan Logs and the Iraq Logs exposed by WikiLeaks remained published. The WikiLeaks founder did not surrender. The Assange case, already politically in its origins, turned into a spiral of increasing geopolitical dimensions.

Our position has always been that the above-described political aspect has always been present in the ‘Assange case’ and we could hardly be – in principle – interested in furthering a discussion on details pertaining the intimacy of Mr Assange or of other people around the constructed ‘legal case.’

2013 Background

Sydney Morning Herald, Assange prosecutor quits while accuser sacks lawyer, Philip Dorling, March 28, 2013. The top Swedish prosecutor pursuing sexual assault allegations against Julian Assange has abruptly left the case and one of Mr Assange’s accusers has sacked her lawyer.

The Swedish Prosecution Authority wants to extradite Mr Assange to have him questioned in Stockholm in relation to sexual assault allegations by two women. Fairfax Media has obtained Swedish court documents that reveal high-profile Swedish prosecutor Marianne Ny has unexpectedly left the handling Mr Assange’s case, effective from Wednesday, and has been replaced by a more junior prosecutor, Ingrid Isgren. The reasons for the change have not yet been disclosed.

One of Mr Assange’s two accusers, political activist Anna Ardin, also applied to the Swedish courts on February 28 to replace her controversial lawyer Claes Borgstrom. Ms Ardin complained that she found Mr Borgstrom spent much more time talking to the media than to her, referred her inquiries to his secretary or assistant, and that she had lost faith in him as her legal representative.

As well as pursuing the prosecution of Mr Assange, Mr Borgstrom has been heavily criticised for his handling of another high-profile case involving an alleged mass murderer, with one prominent Swedish commentator describing him as doing “the worst defence counsel job in modern Swedish history.”

This article was originally published at

Contact the author Andrew Kreig

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