A top Swedish judge has defended the release of classified information by WikiLeaks, pointing out the case against Assange has turned into a legal “mess.”
“It should never be a crime to make known crime of a
state,” Stefan Lindskog told the audience at a public lecture
he gave at Adelaide University, according to Australian Associated
The judge, who is one of the 16 justices working for the Supreme
Court of Sweden, revealed an extraordinary amount of detail on
Assange’s sexual assault case, despite not sitting on it.
The official also indicated that the courts may rule against
sending the WikiLeaks founder to the US due to some conditions of
the existing extradition treaty between the two countries.
“Extradition shall not be granted when alleged crimes [are]
military or political in nature,” Lindskog stressed.
Moreover, according to the judge, it was debatable whether
Assange would have committed a crime under Swedish law.
“What is classified under US law is probably not classified
under Swedish law, and enemies to the US may not be enemies to
Sweden,” AAP quoted the official as saying.
Lindskog added that extensive media coverage of the case has
entailed the public distrust in the legal system.
“I think it is a mess,” he said.
Finally, the judge supported the American soldier Bradley
Manning, who provided some of the classified information to
WikiLeaks. Lindskog said he hoped Manning would go through a fair
trial, saying that the release of classified information was for
the benefit of mankind.
Prior to the speech, Assange condemned Lindskog’s decision to
speak in Australia, calling it “absolutely outrageous.”
The 41-year-old whistleblower, an Australian citizen, has spent
nine months in London’s Ecuadorian embassy, after claiming asylum
to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning
on sexual assault allegations.
Assange fears that once in Sweden, he could be extradited to
America where, according to his lawyers, he is most likely to face
trial and possibly even the death penalty for the release of
thousands of classified US diplomatic cables, some of them about
the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
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