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Swedish Prosecution Damage Control

Trying to argue the case before it even gets to court.


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STOCKHOLM (Rixstep) — There must be a lot of obstinacy in certain circles in the Swedish capital if the prosecution authority feel it necessary to respond to the point of 'general public interest' before it gets to the Supreme Court. But yes - they're already digging the trenches.

At issue is the fact that the EAW framework requires warrants be issued by 'independent judicial authorities', that 60 (sixty) Swedes have already been arrested in the UK on notices issued not by 'judicial authorities' but by prosecutors, and that the English have long wanted to sort this matter out.

Yesterday's discussion in the House of Commons made this patently clear. Prosecutors are not and cannot be 'independent judicial authorities'. Obviously.

So: Marianne Ny and her cohorts on the attack. Or counterattack.

Who's Authorised to Issue an Arrest Warrant?

Obviously the Swedes aren't going to agree with the Brits or the EAW framework. That's a given. So the following popped up at their website today.

The British courts have decided that Assange has the right to appeal the matter of extradition to Sweden to Great Britain's Supreme Court. The relevant question is the authority of Swedish prosecutors.

The question Assange has been given to appeal is if a Swedish prosecutor can at all be authorised to issue a European arrest warrant. According to the EU framework which regulates the European arrest warrant, each country shall appoint the judicial authorities that are authorised to issue European arrest warrants. The Swedish rule that aims to carry out the EU framework in this regard is found in 3 § förordningen (2003:1178) om överlämnande till Sverige enligt en europeisk arresteringsorder.

This statute shows that an arrest warrant for legal process is issued by prosecutors. By legal process is understood criminal investigations and decisions whether to prosecute as well as - if charges are brought - the subsequent trial. According to the same statute, the prosecutor general decides which prosecutors are to be authorised to issue arrest warrants. The prosecutor general has in 1 kap 3 § Åklagarmyndighetens författningssamling (ÅFS) 2007:12 ruled that all public prosecutors are to have this authorisation.

So basically: despite the EAW framework's intention to keep EAWs in the hands of 'independent judicial authorities', the Swedes sort of arbitrarily decided their own (by definition prejudicial) prosecutors are to be that independent judicial authority.

This is something akin to letting a copper on the beat be judge and jury - not that Sweden's current minister of justice hasn't been considering that several times already. This is also something akin to jurisprudence in Stalin's Soviet Union.

The overriding question is why Marianne Ny (or one of her subordinates) cannot - after playing cat and mouse with (Julian) Assange for over one year, after refusing to meet with him for over a month when he was still in the country, after waiting for news he was finally leaving to issue a secret arrest warrant that to this day is still not frankly accounted for at her website - get on a bloody airplane to the UK and use Mutual Legal Assistance to get this matter over and done with.

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