ASSANGE EXTRADITION: Hearing to Resume in September

The judge in Julian Assange’s extradition case said that because of the pandemic his hearing would resume in September, possibly in a court outside London.

Site of Monday’s hearing where Assange’s case was postponed to September. (Wikimedia Commons).

Consortium News

Judge Vanessa Baraitser ruled on Monday that the extradition hearing for WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange would likely resume for three weeks on Sept. 7 if a courtroom could be found, possibly outside London.

Assange’s lawyers had submitted a petition to delay the hearing, originally scheduled to resume on May 18, because of the difficulties of consulting with Assange and of having him appear either in the courtroom, or by video-link because of unsafe conditions in Belmarsh Prison’s video room. 

Baraitser agreed to the postponement because she wants Assange to be physically present in the courtroom. He was unable to attend the brief hearing on Monday because he was “unwell,” Baraitser told the court.

Assange’s defense is expected to call 21 witnesses to the hearing, many who must travel from abroad. The prosecution also agreed to the postponement, saying it might be difficult for prosecutors to travel to London while lockdown conditions in both the U.S. and Britain persist. 

Journalists who phoned into a conference call to listen to Monday’s hearing could not get through, hearing music instead. During April 27’s hearing, at which Baraitser decided to postponement the process, journalists could hear 0nly about 30 percent of what was going on. 

Kristinn Hrafnsson, editor-in-chief of WikiLeaks, said the inability of journalists to listen in to Monday’s proceedings made a mockery of the concept of “open justice.”

Outside Westminster Magistrate’s Court in central London a small group of protesters, including Assange’s father John Shipton, gathered during the hearing. Police soon showed up to break up the gathering as a violation of lockdown orders, though the Assange supporters were standing separate from each other. 


6 comments for “ASSANGE EXTRADITION: Hearing to Resume in September

  1. Jim Griffiths
    May 6, 2020 at 14:09

    I very much agree with Eileen Kuch.
    What words can one bring to describe this farce, this travesty? In any common human meaning, justice it is not. The crime of which Assange is accused seems to have been nothing more nor less than the exposure of wrong-doing, ordinarily taken to be a public service. Everything I have read says that this case is a political manoeuvre on the part of Americans who cannot get Assange prosecuted, I would say ‘persecuted’, to their satisfaction anywhere but under US law, whatever that might consist of. Once in America, the man would be as good as dead. He certainly would never lead an ordinary life again.
    Not the least inhumane aspect of the story is the refusal of bail by the pathetic Vanessa Baraitser, a tool not of British jurisprudence, which most of us once held in high regard, but of British politics, the lackey of American world-domination. By all accounts the man is ill, liable to be made more severely ill, even lifeless if the currently incurable corona virus gets him, as it is more than likely to do. I would wager that the prison governor would be only too happy to be relieved of his case. I’m also sure that his accusers would be delighted to see him dead, any which-way. [Am I allowed to express that opinion or will it be viewed as another affront to the legal status of the accusers? If so I bend the knee with Westminster and apologise]
    The only wrong this man has done, if wrong it be, has caused no personal physical harm to anyone. Let him go, cease this humiliating charade!

  2. Pluto
    May 5, 2020 at 11:14

    This is a lesson for every freedom loving person everywhere to always resist giving any power to the state, and to always strip it of its power wherever possible. The state has virtually unlimited resources (which it extracts from you at the threat of gunpoint) to protect its power. That is exactly what it is doing to Julian Assange. He is not the only one being prosecuted here. You are also the target of this demonic process, and this tyrannical judge is speaking to you. But remember if she wasn’t the judge someone else would take her place who would be every bit as tyrannical in protecting the state’s power and teaching you a lesson. If Julian Assange wins his freedom it will be because you and me and enough of those who love freedom have pressured the state so much that they feel threatened their government will topple, and along with it their power over us. Let us all work for such a day for ourselves and our progeny.

  3. May 4, 2020 at 23:07

    The subhumans who persicute Julian Assange deserve a worse fate than ordinary criminals. They perpetuate the impunity that allows the worst among us to torture & kill the best among us. There is NO justice when the destroyers of hope and justice pass judgement on those who illuminate their dark deeds and crimes. Perhaps governance has become a totally criminal enterprise when exposing crimes becomes a crime and criminals sit in judgement of those that expose them. Surely this should not stand.

    • Skip Edwards
      May 5, 2020 at 10:26

      Beautifully written. Thanks.

  4. horst schwanz
    May 4, 2020 at 18:58

    this can get on for ever

  5. May 4, 2020 at 18:14

    Julian Assange is not in good health to begin with ,, He’s been ill in the last months in the Ecuadorian Embassy and kept deteriorating in Belmarsh Prison. He hasn’t had any health care since his first day in that horrible prison, which is a violation of the UN Charter.
    Assange has done nothing wrong in publishing the photos he had received from Chelsea Manning of a US gunship crew killing Iraqi civilians – including some Reuters News reporters – in cold blood. That gunship crew committed war crimes and should’ve been held to account. Other news publishers had also published photos of that crime .. None of them were imprisoned for the same thing Assange and WikiLeaks had done.
    It’s long time that Assange received the health care he sorely needs, then send him back to his native country, Australia .. That’s where he belongs,

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